I’ve just finished reading The Other Half of Half-Safe, the sequel to Half-Safe: Across the Atlantic by Jeep. While I’ll review the second book soon, this passage from author Ben Carlin, in the book’s epilogue, bears immediate posting:
Travel is a trap that most men insist on entering if they can. As a boy I had felt that Hungarian soil must differ significantly from Australian. Instead of satisfying curiousity, reading merely stimulates it. One goes abroad to peek around the corner; mainly he sees more corners. He looks round another — to see another — and another to realize evemtually that he has done little but chase his own tail.
A paragraph later, he continues:
Always people have interested me more than places. From a photograph one can grasp the size and beauty of the Grand Canyon but he cannot savour a Spaniard. Even in the search for people there is tail-chasing. It was in a Persian teahouse that I realized that men are basically the same the world over: the funny man, the serious man, the weak man, the strong man…