I really enjoyed this book. I had heard a lot about this author but this is the first of his books that I have read. I just loved it.
“Rudy, a 60-something Englishman with a pierced ear and a bandana, bought his first vehicle in 1966 - a second-hand Barnstable school bus with no suspension and dodgy brakes. It took him as far as Maidstone before the engine caught fire. The recovery mechanic enquired how far he intended to go: Rudy told him Lahore. The mechanic replied he'd be lucky to reach Southend”
Well, that had me hooked. In fact, the bus eventually limped into Istanbul before shuddering to a halt. But having made it so far along the trail, there was no shortage of hippies, dropouts and fellow travelers eager to hitch a ride, even if it meant pushing the bus to Pakistan.
Today, such overland drifting is no longer possible. Iran closed its borders to travelers after the revolution in 1979. Afghanistan became a lawless battleground for the world's superpowers. Where the first wave of hippies might be welcomed into the homes of Kurdish tribesmen as honored guests, Islamic terror groups now identify tourists as a legitimate target. Yet perhaps the biggest blow to the hippy ideal was the realization that there really was no Shangri-La - or at least there wasn't until the Chinese authorities recently designated the anonymous Himalayan town of Zhongdian as an official tourist paradise.
However, none of this deterred Rory, he leads us on a rambling fun filled trip. I could smell the “hash” taste the dust, and feel the thrill of a trip I would love to have made.
Rory, transported me back to the 60’s 70’s a time which to me was “the best” for that I say “Thank you”