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"I never travel without my diary.  

One should always have something

sensational to read on the train."  

                                - OSCAR WILDE

old papers from 1829 about Malta, at Kew Archives England
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I will never share your email address

slight case of jetlag -

I opened a car door 

into my forehead.

writer Shelley Dark

a slight case of jet lag during my research travels...
I opened a car door into my forehead.... 


In 1827, he was the reckless son of a Greek shipowner in pursuit of his father’s approval, riches, and a perfect Greek wife. But he turned pirate.

She was a fiery Irish orphan seeking a new life in New South Wales, and she said she'd never marry.  

Then they met...

SON OF HYDRA tells their true story



One day we might travel like this again! 

I feel quite teary this latest adventure is over . But I know for you (and luckily that means for us too) there will always be another one! (Monaro 2019)


What a wonderful wonderful 7 weeks thank you! (Tasmania 2019)


What a lovely journey we have been on with you Shelley!  Fabulous photos and quite the eucalyptus expert... (Tasmania 2019)


Loved it all Shelley.  I'm sorry your holiday is over too!! (Tasmania 2019)

I know it is selfish, but I am enjoying your London so much, I wish you could stay a little longer. (London Cork 2018)


Shell, you’ve excelled yet again! I have enjoyed this journey so very much and feel a little sad it’s coming to an end. (London Cork 2018)


What a wonderful trip we have made with you...I have enjoyed it tremendously. Thank you for your generosity. (London Cork 2018)


Tks Shelley - it’s been a magnificent trip for me too - mostly taken in my own bed upon waking! You’re an inspirational traveller and reading your blog brings the world alive. (London Cork 2018)


Feeling more than a little privileged to have shared your trip, with such wonderful descriptions, photos and insights that only you could bring to your readers. Can’t wait for the book! (London Cork 2018)


Shelley, your magical mystery tour has been so entertaining. 
I enjoyed the trip from my bed, awakening each day to another magic experience. Thank you. (London Cork 2018)


Thanks for sharing your wonderful trip Shelley! I've loved reading about the big picture and discovering the small delightful details with you. (London Cork 2018)


It was my first trip with you and it won't be my last. I really felt like I was there with you and am missing it immensely. Where are we off to  next? (Hydra 2018)


I look forward every day to hearing about your adventures! Don't leave, or at best promise to keep writing and taking such fine photos. The flowers today were marvelous and the views along the path and down to the harbor were lovely! what fun I'm having on your trip! (Hydra 2018)


This has been the best adventure of all!  (Hydra 2018)


Thank you for another wonderful trip Shelley-  I’ll miss my morning fix. (Hydra 2018)


Shelley I am getting all teary. That was a beautiful account of your last day in Greece. However  I am sure you will venture back... .as it's now in your heart.Thank you for the wonderful journey you have taken us on, safe travels home. (Hydra 2018)


Shelley, I have fallen in love with Hydra and Athens, thanks to your wonderful storytelling, and exquisite photography. I feel I have been given a beautiful gift, and will look forward to your future travels. (Hydra 2018)


Thank you so much Shelley.  You have drawn me into your world with such wit and taste.  Loved every word and your pictures are sublime. Especially liked the attention to the architecture and plants. Thank you. (Hydra 2018)


Shelley, I have so LOVED your time in Hydra - it feels like I have been everywhere with you. Your writing is fabulous and the pictures too. Makes me want to go and explore there too! (Hydra 2018)


Your brilliant photography and wonderful way with words, never disappoint! I am in love with Africa already! My grandchildren are also engaging with your exotic birdlife images, and comical beast poses. An amazing experience for us all thank you. (Africa 2017)


Having trouble finding words Shell.  This is THE most fabulous post. (Africa 2017)


Shelley, I'm laughing and crying and my heart is beating with excitement for you and Radiance. This is pure joy to share your beautifully told experience, I am in awe. x (Africa 2017)


Such sensational architecture, art, sculpture, design, landscape .. all magnificently captured by your unerring eye. (Africa 2017) 


No questions Shelley. Just many exclamations! Such enthralling encounters! Extraordinary people! Magnificent images! You have taken us on a magical ride. Thank you so much! (Africa 2017)


Another fabulous trip Shelley - it is now definitely on my list.   (Africa 2017)


Thank you for a wonderful trip yet again, Shelley.  Your photography is amazing.  (Africa 2017)


All of the Japan followers loved their e-trips! My sister-in-law said she felt you were as addictive as Netflix! (Japan 2017)

Shelley you are my joyful addition to 2017 (Japan 2017)

Loved your Japanese trip Shelley and I love Africa, so I'll be on that jeep with you! (Japan 2017)

I have loved every day of our journey together in Japan, sheer delight! I love your writing and your photos and your great humour. (Japan 2017)

Bowing as low as I can go many times Shelley 🙏....your photos and commentary all  quite brilliant....have just loved every day. (Japan 2017)

I will be as sad as you to leave Japan Shell as it has been a wonderful trip with yet another delight around every corner and your photos and description  are amazing. (Japan 2017)


Each day when I received the email from you, I would wait until I came home from work to read it. The routine was to wait until I had prepared my evening meal and then I would eat away and digest your news as well. I would be transported  to your destination and immerse myself completely. It takes about 15 minutes to read the whole daily entry and I think for $25, it is the best money spent. I can’t wait for the Japan posts. Your photos and layout are first class and are a pleasure to read. (James, Jan 2017)


Thank you so much - I had never even considered going to Iran or Oman and this trip may be my favourite so far. (Iran Oman 2016)


We await news of your next venture Shell, having loved all that you've chosen to date! (Iran Oman 2016)


Thank you Shelley, what a ride! It has been such an education as well as enthralling and motivating. (Iran Oman 2016)


It's been fabulous Shell and like every other time, breakfast from now on won't be the same. A gorgeous read every single day.  (Iran Oman 2016)


Your story and photos are better than going myself. Continue with your trips, your disciples will follow. (Iran Oman 2016)


Once again inveterate traveller you have done it to perfection!! (Iran Oman 2016)


It has been a sheer delight to be with you and my morning reads of your adventures started my day with a high spirit. (Iran Oman 2016)


Oh Shelley this is riveting. I'm actually in Sydney with 9 book club friends ((a story in itself) but I had to be dragged out of the room to go shopping. Your writing will continue to flourish & I'm waiting for the next instalment. X 13.06.16 (France May 2016)


I enjoyed 'au revoir Paris' more than any other post, but perhaps I thought that after each one! It has been like opening lots of special parcels, beautifully wrapped. You have given so much of yourself, quite apart from sharing so many fabulous images of France. Please begin plotting the next holiday immediately. We are already restless and impatient ... 7.06.16 (France May 2016)


Thank you Shelley for a another wonderful journey with you, it's the best money I've ever spent signing on with you. I go to France in Sept & have the last week in Paris - you have made me so excited to see it all again. 7.06.16 (France May 2016)


Shelley, I marvel at your great attention to the finest details. This has pricked my inquisitive mind and heart totally! I can't wait till you get your suitcase out again.. thank you for the energy/ time and sterling 5* effort you take.. you're a very generous spirited friend.. even though we've never met.. I know you.. 7.06.16 (France May 2016)


Oh Shell, I'm so sad the trip is over. It was fabulous. I loved every minute of it and can''t wait for your next one, wherever it may be.You just get better and better.  13.06.16 (France May 2016)


I want you to know how much I have enjoyed sharing your trip to India. Your many posts have given me so much enjoyment, and continue to do so with repeat reading.  Thank you for sharing your experiences, insights and wonderful photographs.  ….. I loved each and every one!  Now I miss my daily ‘hit'. 😥  7.3.2016 


Shell your email comes through before I wake and as soon as my eyes are open I have a little peek at my emails to see if you are there. I get so excited I have to almost tie my hands together so I don't open it before I sit down with my coffee and toast. It's become the most gorgeous morning ritual! February 2016


It's uncanny how you manage to capture those magic moments, Shell. I was standing at or near your proximity when most of these pictures were taken and the photogenics of these subjects were not apparent to me at the time. I look at them now through the lens of your camera and have a greater appreciation of the people and the locations, and the colours and the smiles. February 2016


I’m not able to travel now, I am very thankful to be able to have the next best thing at my fingertips . So wonderful - it has opened a world of history and information of the country I am visiting .... I'm tickled pink to be heading off with you Shelley xx  January 2016


Well done you, for having a sense of humour Shell. You light up my life! Xx January 2016


So much laughing and its only day one. Oh my gosh this trip is going to be super duper F.A.B.U.L.O.U.S. January 2016


Oh I'm glad I'm on this journey with you! January 2016


So enjoyed reading this Shelley... Your photos are incredible.. Can't wait for more xx January 2016


What a feast for the eyes in your images…….. This Indian adventure is wonderful and I am loving the way you are capturing the city with soul X January 2016


Heaven heaven heaven Shelley!!!... Love your writing and your sense of humour!!.. January 2016


Loving your photography, feel I am there. …….  I really appreciate it. February 2016


Very special indeed and great insights.. Fantastic experience and relating of the story. ….. You really have a story telling gift. February 2016


I am loving your trip and enjoying the brilliant photos, and detail of stories! Keep it up & safe travels.  February 2016


I am so enjoying your posts, beautiful photos,also still laughing at your finger printing story  February 2016


What a sumptuous pleasure... Your work is beautiful Shelley February 2016


Hanging on your every word and completely intoxicated by these beautifully captured florals! I didn't really want this post to end . . x February 2016


I cannot wait to wake up to India.I feel so alive. Thank you. February 2016


All your posts have been magnificent, Shelley. This one particularly so xx February 2016


This is getting smashinger and smashinger, chapter after chapter. February 2016


Oh Shelley, I am loving this trip thank you. What a delight to wake up here and be transported to India through your beautiful words and images. Xxx February 2016


Shell, you're a star! World class photography. February 2016


Shelley, you are taking my visual literacy through the roof and I love love love the way you capture people going about their day. As for the story telling well... love your work 🙌🏻   February 2016


Am getting such enthusiastic feedback from my giftees. Its gratifying that a gift can give such ongoing pleasure. As for me - each morning brings the exhilarating thought of more stunning India, described so vividly. February 2016


Every day becomes my favourite Shell - not sure this one can beaten ! But I secretly know this will not be the case. February 2016


Wonderful descriptions and insights illustrated by your clever photography Shelley! So much for you to see and remember.Glad I'm along for the ride! February 2016


Travelling with you is wonderful Shelley. xx February 2016


Ooh I'm enjoying this beautiful journey ..pure delight Feb  2016


You have this ability to keep the pace going. Shelley it is as if we are walking along with you surrounded by so much colour.  February 2016


You are really transporting us to India Shell! Brilliant, captivating and so enlightening!  February 2016


My new favourite!!! Loving this trip so much Shell - enormous amount of time you are giving us - above and beyond !! February 2016


Hi Shelley, I'm late to your travel days but I'm addicted. Can't wait for a selfish moment to scroll through the stunning photos & witty captions. February 2016


Your photos Shelley, are just brilliant. I enjoy the start of my day by reading your adventures of the previous day! February 2016


Thank you thank you Shelley for transporting us to another world. You have captured the people's expressions and inner thoughts brilliantly, along the way. And the colour everywhere!! February 2016


I too am going to miss my morning dose of exotic adventure! February 2016


We have been so lucky to have been on your trip with you as I never would have been able to absorb all that fabulous information first hand from a guide.Where to next? I have become used to a daily magical adventure ! February 2016


These have been a magical daily escape!!!! Have just adored your travels. Has brought back so so many travelling memories .... of years long gone but yet so vivid.  February 2016


Just read my last chapter Shell and feel quite sad, what will I do now…?  February 2016


I loved saving up all your posts to view with a glass of wine at the end of a working week – it was a little getaway of my own! - 26.10.15


Shut the gate Shelley Dark! You are incredible. All the things I love totally. What pleasure it is to read your great descriptions. 14.10.15


I simply cannot believe how your writing style drew me in. It was sensational. I felt as if I was in another world. 26.10.15


Shelley I am really loving being on your trip. It is such a fabulous distraction from my day-to-day life to see, smell and hear your adventure unfold. You are so good with your camera and words. It was such a great idea to bring us all along. 3 Oct 2015


Thank you so much for letting me travel with you! It has been the most fabulous trip - I have enjoyed every minute. You have done the most fabulous job, first of all planning it so well, and then painting the picture for all of us with your words and gorgeous photos. Enjoy being back at home planning for for India. I can't wait! 30.10.15


Shell it's so nice to realise I don’t have to go through the drudgery of flight any more.....holidaying with you is the best value escape I've ever had. And I get to spend the money I save on Perrier Jouet and hand made chocolates. 5.10.15


This is a fabulous travel journal you are writing. 5.10.15


I look forward to your daily posts each day. …… You arrive on Saturday morning as well, which puts you in front. Hooked! 10.10.15


These Shelley daily fixes have become my daily highlights. Thank you. 4.10.15


Just love how you describe the sights you are seeing and the emotions they evoke. 10.10.15


It is always exciting to find a new post in my in-box 22.10.15


Your descriptions and photos were fantastic. I walked it with you and was gob smacked! Thank you for taking me on this journey with you. 10.10.15


I've just joined you on your travels & am loving the photos & stories. Some places I've visited, and you've brought it all back to life, and I don't even have to sit at an airport! 12.10.15


I have to pace myself so I don't stay glued to your pages! 13.10.15


Thank you Shelley for letting me live a dream. 30.10.15


Thank you Shelley for taking me along on your amazing trip. Your writing and photos are so beautiful that you transported me to your destination with every post. You are truly fabulous!! I am so looking forward to your Indian adventure. 2.11.15


Even though I had been to many of your destinations (and very recently) I was fascinated by your insight and stories. Receiving your updates was a pleasure I looked forward to. I am signing up for India, somewhere I haven't been but am dying to go. I can't think of a better introduction than through your eyes. ..... a great Christmas present. I just need to work out the deserving recipients. 19.11.15


I adore travelling with you lovely girl 12.10.15


Your photography is superb. The text provides the 'brain food', it is wonderful and enriching to see the world through the eyes of another individual. I am thrilled that I am one of your ORIGINALS and will certainly be joining you on your trip to India in 2016. 21.11.15


shelley dark, writer 

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