Welcome to Panorama: The Journal of Travel, Place, and Nature’s SPACE issue. From the very small to the enormity of our imaginations, essays grow from the furtive earth-bed of mushroom forests to the stars. Granville Carroll’s afro-futuristic cover artwork “Becoming” places us in space. John Angerson provides the obligatory rocket-propelled photos. Matilde Gattoni reminds us that one’s freedom to explore space can suddenly be taken away. The connection with space doesn’t stop there. Melissa Tuckman’s aptly titled poem “Space Junk” connects space debris to modern living. A new section on New Nature Writing probes the world beyond our urban confines. In the second outing for Decolonising Travel, there are excruciating, painful stories, sexual imaginings in the steam room, and personal reflections on historical ties to oppression; all whilst giving writers who have come through VONA/Faith Adiele’s writing programme space to share their work. We finish the issue with a stroll through London — the most ethnically diverse world capital — through the lens of Books Editor Nicolas D. Sampson.
I step foot on Calle Capón, one hand on my saddlebag dangling across my left shoulder. It’s half past noon, my second week in Lima. I’ve left the house late again, but finally arrived in Chinatown after perdón-ing my way off the bus. My host family in Peru applauds me for riding the crowded buses over calling a cab. Part of me does it to prove I’m a real traveller, a New Yorker who knows how to take local transportation instead of relying on taxis like those other tourists. Part of it is for the anonymity of being a passenger, traversing through the neighbourhoods of a new city, where every single street corner is a place I haven’t seen. Except on these buses, I feel like I walk into the living room of someone else’s home each time I step on. Residents stare with wider eyes or side glances. A correctly-assumed-to-be Chinese person, travelling solo, dressed in a navy-blue jacket, loose tee, and skinny jeans, trying to blend in with local currency jingling in my palms.