I really should apologise more to my mother.
While her friends are helping arrange weddings for their kids or enjoying time with their grandchildren, she instead gets to spend restless nights knowing that her son is travelling again, and this time to Iraq.
However I should point out that this is Iraqi Kurdistan, the so-called “other Iraq”, which is peaceful, mountainous and home to a semi-autonomous Kurdish Government.
It’s only my first day here and already I’m hooked due at least partly to our wonderful guide, Karwan, who as an Iraqi-born Kurd fled the country during the Saddam years and came to live in London as a refugee. After almost 20 years in the UK, he has now returned to his homeland to start a tourism business.
And this is the reason why I’m here; to try and work with him so that by 2013 WF will be offering people the chance to travel to this little known, but fascinating region in the Middle East.
Watch this space…and apologies again to my mother.