Friday - - EDITOR’S LETTER - Natalie Long, ed­i­tor Reach me at

What do you look for in a good year? Many of you shared thoughts of peace, hap­pi­ness and fewer traf­fic fines in our first Story Tellers of the year on page 13. I’m to­tally on board with the fewer traf­fic fines – I’ve been work­ing on re­duc­ing those for sev­eral years, and I’ve had more suc­cess than with my waist­line. But for me, a year is of­ten marked by how many times I got on a plane to go some­where cool.

Some­times, it’s one big, box-tick­ing trip; some­times it’s lit­tle get­aways that change scenery and per­spec­tive. All of them, near or far, add some­thing to my life. Not in an earnest, travel-ha­sopened-my-eyes-to-hu­man­ity, cred­it­card-com­mer­cial way, though. It’s mostly in try­ing new kinds of food that I’ve only read about and dis­cov­er­ing they are a) not all they’ve cracked up to be or b) are ab­so­lutely in­cred­i­ble and why don’t we have this in Dubai al­ready? I don’t have a bucket list as such, just a stack of take-out menus that in­spire up­com­ing trips – from sushi to chole bha­ture to pizza.

I’m kid­ding only a lit­tle, of course — go­ing over­seas is a price­less way to ex­pand your thoughts and knowl­edge, and makes you ques­tion the things you thought were right and wrong. It can make you ques­tion who you are: I love overnight, long-dis­tance rail jour­neys, mostly un­der­taken in car­riages that are just so-so. Or do I? A ride in Viet­nam this sum­mer made me won­der if it was me that’s changed, or the roaches.

In bet­ter things on rails, I learned that New Delhi’s air­port is best reached on the in­cred­i­bly con­ve­nient metro sys­tem and Spain shows movies on their trains, both of which I also be­lieve tell me some­thing about the way peo­ple live in those places,

Travel can make you ques­tion who you are: A train ride made me won­der if it was me that’s changed, or the roaches

and make me reflect on what I knew.

Mike Peake’s epic travel bucket list story on page 34 will pro­vide you with an hour or so of arm­chair trav­el­ling this week­end, if noth­ing else. The trips he sug­gests, by speak­ing to some of the world’s most ad­ven­tur­ous, well-trav­elled peo­ple, take you from the tops of moun­tains to an ele­phant-rich delta in the bush, by the way of two In­di­ana Jones-es­que hid­den cities and stillse­cret dive spots. We’d love to hear your amaz­ing travel ideas – share the best places you’ve vis­ited with us on fri­

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