At Linquenda House, Harare's gloomy immigration department, the official inspecting my visa extension form asks me what I do. "I'm a wineseller," I lie.
In crowded Britain, villages like this would be overrun by city dwellers seeking pretty weekend cottages. But France is littered with beautiful villages â€“ what to do with them all?
The professor of surgery hears a knock on his office door. A surgeon enters gingerly to apologise for missing an important student seminar they were running. â€œI was pushing the truck."
In this monument to the unknown soldier, three bronze warriors stand strong, indefatigable and proud in the cause of African nationalism... but they are not African at all. The North Koreans, unrivalled masters of political idolatry in their own land, inadvertently gave Oriental features to the soldiers' statues.
The sleek, cramped Eurostar glides out of St Pancras at lunchtime; a couple of hours, a nip across Paris and weâ€™re at Bercy, boarding the Palatino. The name conjures up in my mind an age of glamorous European sleepers but the train doesnâ€™t live up to its heritage.
I am swimming in the middle of the strait dividing Europe from Asia Minor and I sense most of us are not going to make it.
A mile and a half across the bay, lies the prize of San Francisco - a thicket of skyscrapers shimmering in the early morning haze.
There is a scene in The Loved One, Evelyn Waughs novella of 1948, that takes place at a fictional pet cemetery in Los Angeles called the Happier Hunting Ground.
Democracy's jet-lagged volunteers stumble out of Simon Bolivar international airport into the full glare of the Venezuelan sun.
Twenty feet down through the hazy blue of the Caribbean, several lean, grey Zeppelins cruise silently by.