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Like most journeys this book moves between light and shade, funny and deadly serious, mundane and inspirational. Much was pre-planned but the delights often came through chance encounters and happenings. A peaceful strand runs through it in the joys of observing wildlife and in browsing very slowly along isolated beaches. The elemental beauty of the islands, the awesome power of the weather, and wild jagged seascapes colour the whole story. The author was accompanied on each of these journeys by important friends from across four decades. Together they reflect on some common themes, such as their childhoods, schooling, and the unique good fortune of the post war generation - and how it has played its hand. In this work, some compelling individual life stories emerge.