By J. D. Sumner
This book follows Jack Kaganagh as he attempts to complete his mission to visit 100 countries before his 45th birthday.
The Excursionist is a really interesting read for anyone who loves to travel or is a frequent traveller. It was a thoroughly enjoyable read.
“The excursionist, being an account of the attempt of Jack Kaganagh to visit his ninety-eighth, ninety-ninth and one hundredth countries and thereby ensure membership of the Traveller’s Century Club.”
I loved the quote for part one of the book by Evelyn Waugh,
at the age of thirty-five one needs to go to the moon or some such place, to recapture the excitement with which one first landed at Calais.
For his final choices of destinations he has chosen to go to the Coronation Islands which are between Madagascar and Sri Lanka. Country 98 is Placentia, 99 is Kilrush and 100 is Fulgary. His ambition is to join the ranks of travellers who have visited 100 countries or more.
Booking the holidays for him is a way of escaping from the drudgery of everyday life, of knowing what is going to happen every day.
This book is part travel guide, part humorous memoir. It was a joy to read and Jack was an interesting character who it was easy to empathise with.
“Placentia is a place for wildlife and birdlike enthusiasts. In fact, with the exception of Thursdays late-night opening in peak season down at the museum…there were no nightlife, architecture, clubs, waterfalls, mountains, salt lakes, cave paintings, volcanoes, beaches, temples, churches, or indeed anything worthy of mention apart from the plant life, birdlife and wildlife. If you didn’t like those you didn’t like Placentia.”
According to Jack the first law of travel is that the smaller a country or hotel is the better it is. The second law of travel is,
if you go away, you have to come back sometime, that is, if you’re lucky.
I am really pleased I chose to read this book.
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