More thrills than skills – A half-life in journalism, part 60

Over the next few weeks, is to publish, each weekday, edited extracts from the memoirs of Scottish war correspondent, Paul Harris. ‘More thrills than skills: A half-life in journalism’, is being scheduled for publication next year.

NOT many people knew this, but blood and battle-scarred Bosnia boasted just four miles of coastline – including a seaside resort to rival Torremelinos.

On the beach at Neum, thousands of tourists still disported themselves against a background of burned out and blackened hotels – Beirut-style.

The beach is a mite shingl,y but the water is beautifully clean and cool.

I stayed in the vast Hotel Sunce, built in 1983 and housing 800 guests. It certainly rivalled the best of any Spanish hotel: bars, restaurants, casino and my own large room boasted seating area, bathroom and balcony for less than $15 a night.

It used to be in all the tourist catalogues – that was before war tore apart Yugoslavia in 1991. The barman in the luxurious ground floor bar told me I was the first British ‘tourist’ he had seen for five years.

In fact, you could come here for a week’s holiday and not even know that a war was going on 30 or 40 miles up the road, further to the north.