Coming to Izmir (formerly Smyrna) is special for me because it is the birthplace of Br William Borrell of our Melbourne Province who died last year. Bill went to the international Juniorate and Novitiate and then, following his initial Marist training, volunteered to go to China to teach some of the many children of French immigrants during the early and middle parts of the 20th Century. In the late 1940s he was put under house arrest for twelve months. During my visit to Turkey, there have been frequent references to the silk trade route between China and Europe via Turkey. Having grown up in Smyrna, Bill would have been very aware of this trading path, especially for handpainted porcelain artefacts.
Welcome to my travel blog. I hope you enjoy sharing in the experience. I will be away from Australia for 6 weeks, returning to Melbourne on Sunday 30th November, 2008. I will be travelling to Central America first to prepare for our next Champagnat Pilgrimage in April 2010, then heading to Europe where I will be attending the third biennial Marist Higher Education Conference in Salamanca in Spain.... full info