Why I always carry a notebook

Pen and paper may seem a little quaint in this day and age. After all, if you’ve got an iPad or a Surface Pro or a smartphone, what need have you for a scrappy little exercise book? They’re not ‘tech chic’ and won’t connect to wikipedia or take photos. But the humble pen and notepad is the far greater accessory.

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Discourse: Urban Techwear

“Clothes make the man”

Much of Shakespeare has transcended quotation and become proverb. This line from Polonius (strictly speaking he says “for the apparel oft proclaims the man”), the fool in Hamlet, accompanies another of Shakespeare’s proverbs: “to thine own self be true”. Perhaps Polonius recognised the tension between these lines, for he surely never followed his own advice.

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Gear Review: Sorel Ankeny Hiker Boots

A few weeks ago I received my Sorel Ankeny Hiker Boots in the post from the USA. I wanted a do-all boot for winter backpacking trip to Europe, so I was looking for that elusive mix of durability, functionality and style. Bottom line: the Sorel Ankeny does well.

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Gear Review: Alchemy Equipment

As part of my quest for functional, stylish clothing to take with me while I backpack Europe in this Nov-Feb, I began researching “urban techwear”. Urban techwear is meant to combine the utility of adventure sport clothing from established companies like The North Face or Arc’teryx with street-smart looks that won’t be out of place in a museum, night club or office. You can read more about urban techwear and other options here. This review looks at one brand operating in this high-tech, high-function and high-style market: Alchemy Equipment.

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