Earth’s Rather Special Bond

The early Earth was a rather interesting and noisy place — most definitely not a place that you would have wished to visit. If you were to consider all the hostile residents that inhabited the planet during the later dinosaur years, what happened beforehand would have made the Jurassic look like a preschooler’s picnic.

The Earth is believed to have formed approximately 4.54 billion years ago, give or take six months. In astronomical terms, the Earth was still very young a few million years later. We were still in the ‘furniture arranging and deciding where that…


How a Battle Invented a Nation

Australian soldiers heading for the landing beaches (Photo Australian War Memorial)

Every country chooses a defining moment in the history of their armed forces in representing their soldier’s skill at arms and strength of national character.

In the Armed Forces of the United States they have several such battles, all rightfully earned. Their martial traditions go back to the Revolutionary Wars against England and on to the never-ending senseless modern warfare in the Middle East. England and France too have countless wars and battles sewn into their colours, as has most of the European states. It would be difficult to nominate a country anywhere on the globe where the citizens of…


Chang Mai at the outset of the Coronavirus

Dragon guarding the Wat

We touched down at Chang Mai just before midnight on 17 January 2020.

This was a much anticipated trip, and had been several years in the planning. The world is a big place and time is limited so that one must prioritise, but occasionally, hey, you need to break free of the rules just go out on a tangent.

We have had so many friends who had been to the northern capital of Thailand who had raved about the experience. So instead of just jetting off to Europe this time we decided to have a slow and relaxed two-week vacation…


The Secret Aussie History of the Second Malaysian Confrontation

Australian Army Rifle Company Butterworth, Malaysia 1977

It’s kind of strange to think that an important and significant part of your own personal military history is based upon a lie.

It’s not my personal lie, it’s way bigger than anything I could come up with myself. This lie encompasses 50 years and involves every single government that Australia has had in that time. Even more astounding is the fact that the lie was openly discussed in government and military circles at the very beginning and that the real information is pretty much available for anyone to read today. …


Breaking a vow to not mention this place — ever.

300 Year old fountain — Vence France

Every travel writer has a favourite secret little place that they’d rather jump off a cliff than share it with the general public.

That’s not exactly true, most writers have a few such places, or at least a couple that they treasure and rather not see them become too popular. The thing is, travel is now largely affordable to those who wish to save their pennies and jump on that big shiny tube for the sky ride of their dreams.

There are some places so special that you just don’t…


Things are not what they were.

Brisbane backyard dunnies 1960s.

Believe me, there are plenty of negatives after entering into your sixth decade of existence. One is that you often get written-off as a typical baby boomer when you are anything but. For instance, I care a lot about climate change. I grieve for the planet that we are bestowing upon the next generations. I want universal, affordable healthcare and education for all. I believe that the young are being exploited in every possible direction. …


The Australian Labor Party is currently dwelling in a deep, deep hole.

Notice the big bunching of Labor Leaders since John Howard appeared on the scene and the LNP changed strategy [Image credit Wiki].

Labor submergence is not a recent development. The ground was first broken in 1996 with the loss of the Keating government. Ever since that loss the ALP have been furiously digging ever deeper and not understanding the confounding predicament they find themselves in. There was never one single incident or event that caused this progressive purgatory. However, I would argue that the major contributing factor to Labor’s continual stumbling and electoral defeat to this very day was caused by John Winston Howard.

John Howard burst through Labor’s orbit…


A taxi trip through tragedy

Murdered Ulster Gunman from the year of the 1998 Peace Accords

There was a short toot outside our apartment indicating that the black cab was here to whisk us away into history. We had arrived in Northern Ireland the day before, having spent three days in Dublin. Belfast city was quite different to Dublin, almost English in outlook. There was an familiar feeling to the city as if it occupied a completely different country to that of Ireland, which in fact it did.

However, in many ways it also didn’t.

It was the two faces of Ireland that probably injected this strange feeling all about the…


You think that marathon running was only a freak Olympic sport?

Photo by Andrew Slifkin on Unsplash

Ever wondered what it would be like to be hunted?

It would be a tough gig, huh?

Humans do not have tough hides. We do not have sharp claws, massive jaws nor vicious sets of teeth. We are not the fastest runners, not the best swimmers nor highest jumpers. And, we do not have warm fur to protect us from the elements. Compared to most other animals it takes a full decade and a half for us to even begin to properly defend ourselves. A horse or a calf…

Sean Arthur

Australian writer, amateur historian and travel buff.

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