Friday, August 29, 2014

Round the Bend by Alistair McGuiness



Title: Round the Bend: From Luton to Peru to Ningaloo, a Search for Life After Redundancy
Author: Alistair McGuiness
Publisher: Matador
Pages: 256
Genre: Travel
Format: Paperback; Kindle

Purchase at AMAZON

From the Amazon to the Andes and Kilimanjaro to Cape Town.  
This adventure story captures the reality and exhilaration of leaving home to undertake Gap Year travel in South America, Africa, Fiji and Australia.
Three things happened simultaneously. The lioness charged, Alistair fled across the parched savannah and his wife screamed for him to run faster. Stuffed deep inside his tattered rucksack was a guidebook containing advice on what to do in wildlife emergencies, which he planned to read if he survived the next thirty seconds. Future plans to climb Kilimanjaro, teach English in the Amazon and live in Australia were temporarily forgotten as he turned to face the pouncing lioness, thinking back to the words of advice from his mother-in-law. "Don't do anything silly, and look after Francine." From deep underground in a remote Bolivian mine to the scorched Australian outback, Round the Bend is an adventure travel story. It explores the turbulence of redundancy, the excitement of travel, the anguish of leaving home and the challenges of starting a new life in Australia

Book Excerpt:
Prologue

Like many adolescents, I spent my youth staring out of classroom windows wishing I was somewhere else. While the teachers handed out homework, I dreamt of travelling to faraway shores, discovering nomadic tribes and trekking to the Seven Wonders of the World.
Depending on the subject matter and the personality of the teacher, my level of concentration wavered each lesson. Geography fascinated me, maths baffled me, religion confused me and German lessons terrified me. Nothing fazed my classmate Mik Scarlet.
He was going to be a pop star and everyone in school knew it. Trivial matters like German lessons were just a minor distraction on his path to stardom. By the time we were sixteen, Mik was networking with Gary Numan and I had retired from language lessons, hoping that laminated menus with pictures would get me through a lifetime of international travel.
But fate had other plans and twenty years after failing in German I found myself on a plane heading to Ecuador for lessons in Spanish. Maybe this time it would be different and I wouldn’t gaze out of the classroom window wishing I was somewhere else.

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