A Short Walk in the Hindu Kush
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A Short Walk in the Hindu Kush
Eric Newby
Travel & Adventure
Jul 30, 2018
This very funny book is an irresistible example of a characteristically English genre: You might call it the “Wacky but Intrepid School of Travel Writing.” Books belonging to this happy group feature improbable travelers who embark, usually with little or no planning, on arduous journeys through remote and perilous regions. Newby’s jolly narrative begins in a London fitting room, where he is at work as a not-very-successful salesman for a women’s fashion designer. Nurturing a secret longing to explore “unknown territory” (and escape the Fashion Industry in general and the Spring Collection in particular), he fires off a telegram to a friend at the British embassy in Rio de Janeiro. One thing quickly leads to another, and soon Newby and his pal find themselves—after four days of “climbing lessons,” if that’s what you can call ambling over gentle slopes in Wales—in a remote and perilous region indeed: the Hindu Kush of northeastern Afghanistan. There, the fearsome peaks of the Nuristan range dare them to ascend. The narrative fares better than the travelers, building a steady comic momentum that is all the more entertaining for its detailed tabulation of their mishaps and mistakes.
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May 3, 2019
Greatest travel writer ever
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