Posts Tagged ‘In a Sunburnt Country’


Travel ‘Til Your Eyes Blur and Your Fingers Blister

October 10, 2007

Are you desparate to leave your humdrum life behind and set off for lands with names you can’t even pronounce? Or maybe you prefer dreaming up the kind of expensive, fancy vacations that celebrities enjoy, but that you can’t afford on your student budget. To anyone suffering from a case of unsatiable wanderlust, I recommend that you begin your travels the old fashioned way: through books. And yeah, “as an au pair to the rich and famous” would be another good option there.

National Geographic put together a list of 80+ titles to form their Ultimate Travel Library. Using their suggestions, start your next adventure at your local bibliothèque. You’ll be able to hit all seven continents in a matter of weeks without spending a penny, and your chances of getting malaria are next to zero.

Bill Bryson A Walk in the WoodsThe Ultimate Travel Library includes classics by Mark Twain, Hemingway, and Henry Miller as well as modern tales from writers like Tim Cahill and Peter Carey (who almost caused me to get a less-than-good grade in a Post-Colonial Writers course a couple of years ago).

I was especially pleased to see that Bill Bryson, the coolest middle-aged man with the loveliest American-British accent you will ever hear, has made the list more than once. His description of cricket in Down Under (titled In a Sunburnt Country for American audiences) helped me to completely forget how exhasuted and carsick I was while taking the bus from Sydney to Canberra, and A Walk in the Woods was so enchanting, I actually took one.

Read, plan, go.