Thursday, 8 May 2014

Lois on the Loose -Thoughts on a Travel Book

I have really enjoyed this book. I read another of her books a couple of years back when she motorbikes through Africa on her own. Lois is a very brave young English woman with a travel itch that can't be stopped.

Even if you don't like motorbike travel books which I love because I am so jealous of them, a person can enjoy these books for the geographic location alone.  Lois is a lovely writer, funny and interesting.  In this book she begins her journey in Anchorage, Alaska and rides south on the Pacific American highway all the way to the tip of Chile in South America.

The amazing part of this particular story is she rides on a 250 Yamaha trail bike that doesn't go over 55 miles an hour. Her bike is constantly losing bits off from it, breaking down and just making her wonder if it will last.  She meets up with a couple of travelling companions along the way. One of her travelling companions is very compatible with her on the road and they have a great time. The other woman she travels with is a spoiled brat and only wants to really portray the image of sultry, sexy biker and has no patience. I don't know how she put up with her as long as she did.

As to the 'on the road' information her adventure in Alaska and Canada is quite funny wondering if a bear will eat her during the night. She doesn't mention too much about California but then it picks up again in Mexico and Central America where she struggles with border crossings.  Some of these are quite hairy.  Once she reaches Peru and Chili we breath a sigh of relief.

A couple of years ago I did a long ride on my 250 cc Scooter going onto the Australian mainland and riding from Hobart to Longreach in Qld and over to the east coast at Rockhampton and then south along the coast back to Hobart. It was a charity ride to raise money for prostate cancer research and we had a myriad of experiences. Ever since I did that ride (7300 km in 3 1/2 weeks) I have wanted to get back on the road again with my newer scooter, a 350 Italian touring bike. Maybe next year.

Motorbike travel books are a genre of their own. Everyone remembers Ewan and Charlie on their Long Ride around the world but they had an entire support crew that did a lot of things for them. They only had to ride and smile for the camera.  These other stories are individuals, that generally travel along and as a result they meet all manner of interesting people and have really amazing things happen to them.  You never know what will happen next when you are on the road on a motorbike. It is certainly an adventurous way to travel.  I have read quite a few motorbike travel stories and this is one of the better ones.  I have thoroughly enjoyed it.

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