5.0 Homage to Heroes and Helpers, Part two

The single most-asked question I’ve had in the last eight months is:  “Have you read ‘Travels With Charley?’”

My first entry into the Journal Section of Year on the Road Blog was Homage to Heroes and Helpers  (https://allevenson.wordpress.com/bits-and-pieces-2) — a frank admiration of John Steinbeck, author of powerful novels and one great travel book. 

The second most-asked question is:  “Have you read ‘Blue Highways?’”

Yes, long ago and, today, the book is on the short list of to be re-read.

Besides these two books, I’ve had other infections of itchy feet syndrome.  

When I wrote the original blog entry I had another inspiring book in mind, “A Walk Across America” by Peter Jenkins (1979).  I was also thinking of the 25-year television series on CBS that commenced in 1967, “On the Road with Charles Kuralt.

While on the present trip I realized I read another great travel book in the last few years.  “A Sense of the World” by Bay Area writer, Jason Roberts (2006).  I forgot about it only because, on first reading, the book is a biography of a blind man who led an extraordinary travel life. 

I have already tipped my hat to Ralph Brandt, the editor of the Bridgeton Evening News fifty years ago.  (https://allevenson.wordpress.com/bits-and-pieces-2/) My early admiration for his daily column, The Scribbler, stirred my Inner Wordsmith.

I must confess I have not read Alexis de Toqueville’s 1831 book, “Democracy in America”, which may be the godfather of all books on traveling in America.

I expected by now I would have written more detailed essays about how these traveler/writers affected me.  Those essays are in the pipeline somewhere behind the more immediately stimulating people and places postings.

My list seems short.  I must have missed some books that stir the travelers—armchair or actual adventurers. – who follow this blog.   Could I ask you to share, via this blog, your suggestions and recommendations?

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10 Responses to 5.0 Homage to Heroes and Helpers, Part two

  1. Christine Thomas says:

    Al-All of your commentary is so compelling,,,you may even want to go the old route and re-read “The Iliad” and “The Odyssey”…other classis…that now sit in my living room, awaiting my perusal…
    Am sailing tomorrow on a Sabre 36 with OCSC…do not know crew or anyone else, but it’s always a good go. weather COULD be nicer-cloudy and cold, like Seattle is normally. And the club is hosting a post-sail BBQ…and so is Spaulding for lunch, which I hope we can make…that is such a super place..ws happy to have taken my then 12 y/o grandson there to learn about making wooden boats..wish I could teach him more,but Seattle is a long commute…
    Keep doing well.
    Christine Thomas

  2. Could you correct Amgel or should I? ANGEL is correct.

  3. Dave L says:

    I am not a travel reader but from my point of view, you have rounded the bases. Those authors you mention, and ask for, have already spoke in their voice and it’s not like yours needs to copy or is lacking a further tuning. Yes it’s good to acquait with the masters, fuel-up before launching your own composition – it seems to help with one’s confidence while soaring. But let me observe, with decades of serious and varied adventure socked under your belt, and substantial skill at writing, you are already, right now, beyond ready for launch. In fact, I thought you were, quite convincingly, well on your way into orbit without further need of the masters.

  4. Linda says:

    My First and Favorite Travel Books were “The Boxcar Children” series by Gertude Warner. Written for second graders. Four orphan siblings live in a boxcar without parental supervision, much like an rver does:) They traveled by rail and solved mysteries wherever they went. Their Grandfather was rich and kind just like mine.
    My second book was really magazines as big as a book The National Geographic, no explaination needed.

  5. john miller says:

    Richard Halliburton was the hero of my childhood. I devoured all his books including those borrowed from the adult section of the Collingswood NJ public library. OH The Royal Road to Romance. I still must swim the Hellespont as he did!
    I received some unexpected award several years ago and went on line and bought all his books and I still REREAD them.
    Oh Youth, Divine Treasure
    There thou goest to never return
    When I see thee I cry
    And I am crying without even thinking RUBEN DARIO

  6. michael joyce says:

    A novel appeared along the bottom of each page of the Whole Earth Catalog, a reflection of a generations lust for something new and better unfolding through the “hippy” culture and times, with snapshots of America, its’ places, people, and ways of the time.

    Titled “Divine Rights Trip,” it is a delight we “rolled one” along with in our motorhome named “Urge” on a transformational journey around our wonderful country. The narrator is an old Volkswagen van.

  7. karen wittgraf says:

    Guess I have to go with Steinbeck’s “Grapes of Wrath” and Of Mice and Men’ to get the feel of travel and inhabitants of California at that time. We have a version of Karault’s locally- Jason Davis “On the Road Again”, mostly exploring Minnesota and the ethnic celebrations and unusual traditions. One old guy in Delano, Mn. has an enormous ball of string in his front yard- been adding to it for 50 years. Would that be boredom?

  8. BB says:

    Stephen Fry, who covered 50 states.

  9. Pat Bean says:

    I reread “Travels with Charley” the first year I was on the road because a friend said Maggie and I were the female incarnation of Steinbeck. Kuralt, Moon, Theroux, Tim Cahill (I get his sense of humpor and loved Road Fever) Laurie Gough and so many other travel writers enrich my life. After reading “Blue Highways,” I bought it as gifts for dozens of family members and family. I just got “A Sense of the World” for my birthday. It was on my Amazon wish list. Anyway I just wanted to say thank you for this blog and for reminding me how much I enjoy reading travel books.

  10. Colleen Rae says:

    One of my favorite books on travel is – Take Me With You, by Brad Newsham, partly because I know the writer and he IS an excellent writer, and partly because he travels like I used to travel – with a backpack. I highly recommend that book. He lives in SF and drives a cab.

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