|This was an unexpected amount of fun. It was one of my Read Harder 2017 picks, my travel memoir for task #8. It turns out that this was a perfect option for me. Friedman experience some different cultures, goes to some crazy places and even lives there a while but she does not get all judgey about the way people live or lose sight of where she has come from and the luxuries she enjoys.
That said, these travels of hers also take her on a bit of an internal journey. This I also appreciated. I know that some people do manage to go places and stay absolutely unchanged by them, but I relate more to Friedman on this account. Traveling changes me too. Its not so much learning about others but getting the opportunity to live in another community that looks at the world a little differently. Its hard for it to not rub off a little on me. Its hard to explain.
The point here is that Friedman recognizes this. She recognizes and relates well the value of getting outside our own communities for a while and seeing what else is out there. She's not quite trying to find herself, but I feel like that's the real journey here.
I am jealous of all the places Friedman goes. I am fairly well traveled but I haven't been to any of the countries Friedman goes to in this book. They're all on my list of places I dream of going. On the other hand, her description of the backpacker/hostel life assures me that this is not the way for me to travel. Backpacking maybe, hostels definitely not. Then again, I'm married with a little kid now. We're working on an elongated summer concept around the US to hit all 50 states one day. That's more doable in the short term.
Altogether, I really loved it. Friedman's style of writing was fun and engaging and her travels were interesting.