Archive - Times

Seductive Symi - the quietly smart Greek island

We develop a spring in our step on the island of Symi. No wonder - there are apparently 374 steps from its harbour, Yialos, to our villa. This is according to its owner, George Kalodoukas - an erstwhile sea captain - who sports a moustache that could double for a thatched roof. Regardless of his impressive facial decoration and his impossibly white Panama hat, his maths proves wonky. I count only 278 steps.

The Times, 31.01.2015

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Sea, sand and solitude - welcome to Greece's secret island

It's a place of Olympian beauty where emerald isles rise languidly out of a patchwork turquoise and wine-dark sea. But my two teenagers and their friends disregard this scenery that's fit for the gods. Instead they are focusing on our fellow passengers.

The Times, 01.02.2014

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Tranquility, temples and yoga. Who needs a spa?

I need to come back as a man in my next life. It's better than being a woman. So says the astrologer monk, Wangchuk, who counsels the king and Queen of Bhutan. He's sitting in the lotus position on his bed, mumbling, sniffing and snorting as he turns the pages of his astrological book - revealing ever more esoteric tips to help me in this lifetime and after.

The Times, 11.01.2014

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A journey down the Danube into history

I'm on the MS Amadolce, a riverboat cruising down the Danube past Hungary, Croatia, Serbia, Bulgaria and Romania - from Budapest to Bucharest in seven days. On board it's like a comfortable floating United Nations. There are Australian ambulance drivers, octogenarian Florida widows, jolly Puerto Rican insurance salesmen (we're soon all sharing dining tables).

The Times, 13.04.2013

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Adventures in secret Sicily

There are not many families who own canyons. But the aristocratic Nifosì family have their own gorge — well, part of one — near their home in Sicily. It’s on the southeast side of the island, near Ragusa.

And because we’re staying in their hotel, we can visit it. There’s no mobile signal. No traffic. Just the sound of insects, birds and water. As we walk along the edge of its gurgling baby river, the air is pungent with wild herbs and pine. Gloriously, the area has remained relatively undiscovered. It’s off the tourist track of Palermo, Agrigento, Syracuse and Taormina.

The Times, 09.02.2013

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A voyage worth singing about

As we sail away from the medieval coastal town of Kotor, Montenegro, all ancient walls and 12th-century churches, with a dramatic backdrop of mountains, the warm breeze is filled with the sound of altos and baritones. One minute they're singing Bellini, the next it's Bizet. There's a piano on deck too.

The Times, 15.09.2012

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Is this the most expensive hut in the world?

The Gstaad Palace, Switzerland, is full of European royals, Greek ship owners and tuxedo-clad waiters. Liz Taylor loved it and so does Valentino. But when people with kingdoms and Ferraris tire of socialising, dancing and the spa of all spas, they can pay a princely sum to stay in a mountain hut with an outside lavatory.

The Times, 16.06.2012

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Heat, holy men and chanting at dawn: are you tough enough for an ashram?

We pull up at the ashram. A bare-chested man in a dhoti walks past as monkeys and peacocks wander around. "I've been here before," I say, startled. "In another life," replies a distant cousin, Alan Lawrence. No, two years ago, en route to Kerala. I visited for nanoseconds and thought: "Golly, how could anyone stay here? So boring and uncomfortable." Now I'm here for two weeks.

The Times, 03/09/2011

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A spa so beautiful it's enough to make you sick - literally

Caroline Phillips tries a radical detox treatment in India, while, overleaf, we suggest the 20 best spas to beat the new year blues.

The Times, 08/01/2011

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Behind every musical child is a parent working just as hard

A 'holiday' camp for Suzuki Method training is exhausting -but it's worth all the sacrifices, says Caroline Phillips.

The Times, 09/05/2005

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Lunch isn't for wimps

When Faith MacArthur was a child, she'd pluck chickens and pick potatoes during the harvest. She lived in "Cow Town" - Calgary, Alberta - in the Prairies. Her mother, a minister's wife, would hang home-made noodles around the house to dry. Sitting on her mother's knee, four-year-old Faith would pummel bread dough and make carrot curls for garnish. Now Faith, 42, is standing in her fashionable Notting Hill kitchen, knee-high in ingredients for soups: cumin, cinnamon, turmeric, ginger, chickpeas, chillis. Rows of saucepans are steaming on an industrial oven and scribbled, half-complete recipes litter every surface. Soon, some of these ideas she's trying out at home will be made into the five tonnes of soup she sells every day.

The Times, 05/06/2004

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My father, the luckiest President

This week a commission of historians will deliver their verdict on the wartime conduct of Kurt Waldheim. For his most ardent supporter, his daughter Christa, there can be only one possible outcome.

The Times, 08/02/1988

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Ladies' day in the killing fields

Sue Smith first went shooting 20 years ago, when she was seven. Her father, a gun-smith, took her on a duck shoot. At 10, she was giver her first gun, 'a 28-bore, the next size up from a 410'. She went pigeon shooting.

The Times, 06/01/1988

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Seduction on sale

The first incident of sales promotion in action, according to lain Arthur, occurred in Genesis, in the Garden of Eden. Adam ate an apple from the Tree of Knowledge and paid the price. In this case the snake was the salesman, the tree was superbly merchandised, with excellent display support material and the price was self doubt. 'So what part of Eve have to play in this point-of-sale decision to purchase?'

The Times, 12/06/1987

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Monday Page: Ballgowns to best sellers - Una-Mary Parker

If you have not heard of Una-Mary Parker yet, you soon will have. She is currently embroiled in scandals that involve sex, drugs, fraud and embezzlement, and last week she masterminded a hijack and broke down in tears after a friend took an overdose and died. 'I have experienced some of these things,' explains the charity queen-turned-novelist, 'but 90 per cent come from my imagination. ' They occur, in fact, in her still unfinished second novel, Scandals (her first, Riches, is due out this summer).

The Times, 08/06/1987

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Wednesday Page: There's money in those mouths

This weekend a 'chatathon' will raise money for charity and reveal a new champion talker

Maria Meredith, aged 31, talks non-stop. Her loquaciousness, inspired by an occasional nod, runs smoothly from the subject of holidays to ironing, the media, children, cement and her kitchen fittings. She talks incessantly - she offers a marathon of words. One imagines her builder husband, like some enforced trainee Quaker, coping by placing insulation wadding either in his ears or mouth.

The Times, 06/05/1987

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Monday Page: The secrets of Morganization

Janet Morgan's business is other people's business techniques - and how to make them more effective

When Dr Janet Morgan talks, corporations and governments listen. 'Vaguely 40', she is described 'rather grandly' (no formal training) as a management consultant. 'I am just asked in as myself, to notice things. ' In a recent edition of the BBC's staff newspaper she wrote an article that showed exactly what she had noticed during her four-year stint as special adviser to the then director-general, Alasdair Milne.

The Times, 20/04/1987

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Friday Page: We've ways of making you work

Caroline Phillips meditates on the less sinister side of self-awareness courses

Seven years ago, when I was a politics student, I attended a weekend seminar - one which, offering instant enlightenment, promised to change one's life. Students who had attended it glowed with confidence, displaying an enviable clarity of purpose, and enhanced ability to communicate. The course had its biggest impact at Bristol University. It was not run under the aegis of the university, but rather of oner Robert D'Aubigny a former actor and son of a meat salesman. It was called Exegesis and folded in 1984.

The Times, 10/04/1987

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Out and About: Noisy, smelly, living history - A Huguenot family at home in East London

Somebody has just died. The straw strewn on the pavement and the cobbled lane outside the house signify as much. Meanwhile the gas lamp flickers above the door, and a wooden handstick indicates that this is a weaver's house. The house is dark inside, except for a few candles, and a Cockney expresses his concern for my safety - before driving his taxi on to Liverpool Street Station.

The Times, 21/03/1987

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Wednesday Page: Super Puppy grows up

David Cassidy, the pop superstar who could not cope with fame, is back - on the West End stage, in Time. Caroline Phillips spoke to him.

The Times, 18/03/1987

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Monday Page: Separated by a common faith

On Thursday the General Synod will consider the ordination of women in the Church of England. Caroline Phillips listens to both sides of a bitter argument.

The Times, 23/02/1987

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Wednesday Page: Sex, says Madame, is a taxing thing - and she should know

As the Cynthia Payne case continues, Caroline Phillips flew to Paris to talk to the celebrated Madame Claude.

The Times, 28/02/1987

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Friday Page: How one family is coping / Children with Aids

When they heard that their son, Peter, was an Aids virus carrier, his parents felt annoyed. 'We didn't think it was our turn for another problem. But now we just want to let people know the positive things we feel about it', says Norman, his father, a 36-year-old computer systems manager.

The Times, 12/12/1986

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Spectrum: Hoorah for hard work

After the laid-back Sixties and street-marching Seventies, hard work appears to be back in vogue.

The Times, 31/10/1986

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Spectrum: The forgotten war / Sandy Gall has just returned with unique battle footage after a perilous trip through occupied Afghanistan

To most people, the public face of Sandy Gall is as an ITN newscaster. But he is equally a veteran war correspondent, having covered Vietnam, the Congo and Amin's Uganda. And recently he returned from a perilous two months dodging Russian patrols in Afghanistan in search of the guerrilla leader Ahmed Shah Masud.

The Times, 19/09/1986

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Wednesday Page: 'Please help, my wife is beating me'

When Vanessa, a battered wife for 10 years, met a battered husband, she found it difficult not to laugh. A year later, she takes the issue very seriously indeed. 'I think it may be worse for men', she says. 'They aren't likely to tell anyone and there isn't a refuge for them to go to. '

The Times, 27/08/1986

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“Caroline Phillips is a tenacious and skilful writer with a flair for high quality interviewing and a knack for making things work.”

Paul Dacre, Chairman Associated Newspapers

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