Sunday, January 31, 2021

The Unsavvy Traveler: Women's Comic Tales of Catastrophe Edited by Rosemary Caperton, Anne Mathews, and Lucie Ocenas

  I'm listening to Carols From King's, Choir of Kings College.



I  found this book in an out of the way diner in a small town in Louisiana, somewhere off I-10, just before New Orleans. Don't ask me the name, I don't know it, but it was serendipity that my husband and I found it.

Not only was the down home cooking good, it also had, on the other side of the cash register, some tables laid out with used books for sale. I got this book for two dollars. The stories that were good certainly were worth the two dollars.

I love road trips and traveling all over the world and I have my own horror stories about certain places I traveled to, so I appreciated the nightmares these women went through.

A girl teaching in China finds a waitress at a restaurant has stolen her jacket. She chases her down, tackles her and then runs back to the school compound where she works with a mob of angry Chinese on her heels.

A woman decides to see the Gorillas in the Mist, in Central Africa. Her idea of a "romantic encounter" with the Silver Backed Greys turned out not remotely as she planned. But I'm sure she's ready for Survivor.

Another young lady learns that the Japanese are too polite to blame you when your toilet breaks and floods the apartment below.

Others went on cruises that went horribly wrong. Two women find that they're not on a cruise at all but have been duped by the one woman's brother in working on his sloop. Shanghaied by your own brother. Sad. At least they abandoned ship on one of the Caribbean Islands and somehow made it back to the States and home.

I think my favorite was of the woman who decided to join with another woman and man to cross the densely forested mountain range from one side of Papua New Guinea to the other only to find she was not ready for such strenuous hiking and is soon abandoned by her hiking partners and must find her way alone to civilization. All I can say is that she is very, very lucky to have survived to write about it.

I won't lie. Some of the stories stink. I really REALLY hate writers who shape their stories into propaganda for their political ideologies. (Cubans are starving to death because of American Republicans. If it were written today they'd blame Trump. He's such a useful scapegoat. I guess America/Trump is also forcing the Cuban government to imprison thousands of their own people for being stupid enough to believe that a country lacking individual freedom, including free enterprise is why they are starving. I guess that's why so many are trying to come to the U.S.)

That gripe aside, many of these stories are excellently written and provide a wonderful vicarious experience traveling all over the world. I'd recommend it. 


Meet Maurice, my art critic.  He thinks there's too much blue.  What do you say?






mudpuddle said...

i can't imagine an innocent in New Guinea... all i've read is that it's chock full of poisonous and hungry animals... and plants!

Ruth @ with freedom and books said...

Oh, cute! It's like he posed for the picture.

I love how America (and especially, Republicans) are responsible for all of the pollution, man-made global warming, and poverty in OTHER countries. It's never that particular government's responsibility...ever. Remember when everything used to be Reagan's fault? Trump's like, "Hold my beer!"

Gosh, and Cuba is a no-brainer. If people can't figure out why Cubans live in poverty and with zero opportunity, then they have their head in the sand.

Brian Joseph said...

The book sounds great.Though I have had a few travel mishaps myself so I also could appreciate this.

Some of the stories do sound astounding.

I also agree that political lectures usually do not mix well with stories such as this.

Have a great week!

R.T. said...

Hmmm ... short story anthologies can be hit or miss collections ... I hope the hits outnumbered the misses ...
Note: a recent ER adventure has me back on the road with a different kind of short story writer ...

Sharon Wilfong said...

Hi RT. They certainly can. But this anthology only cost two bucks and it was worth all the good stories. I will look up the blogspot.

Sharon Wilfong said...

HI mudpuddle,

It certainly isn't a place I'd try to hike. I'm just glad the poor woman survived to tell us about it.

Sharon Wilfong said...

Hi Ruth,

I agree with you. And now Canadians are shocked and outraged that thousands of them are losing jobs because Biden is closing the pipeline. These guys were PRO Biden and he made no secret about what he was going to do. The same thing is about to happen in pro-Biden Pennsylvania.

Sharon Wilfong said...

Hi Brian,

I bet your travel stories would make good reading. Have you considered it?

Sharon Wilfong said...

Oh and Ruth. When I read my piggies like to sit right behind me, leaning against my neck. When I got up from the chair, I saw Maurice like this and couldn't resist taking the photo.

Ruth @ with freedom and books said...

I'm afraid, after they all lose their jobs and businesses, their solution is not to vote differently, but: "This is why we need a Universal Income!"

And Maurice is adorable. He is probably trying to figure out HOW to get into that painting.

Sharon Wilfong said...

Hi Ruth

At prayer Wednesday, we read Proverbs. It spoke of those who love wisdom love life, but those who hate wisdom love death. I think we're seeing that everywhere these days. People rushing toward destruction.