Sunday, February 13, 2011

Funny travel journal

When you're young, idealistic, and fresh out of college, the first thing you do is find a job, right? No, says Mo Willems, the 6-time Emmy award writer for "Sesame Street" and acclaimed author of children's books such as Knuffle Bunny: A Cautionary Tale.

Way back in 1990, Willems decided to go backpacking across the world for one year. And every day of that year, Willems sketched the most poignant thing that happened on that day. The result is one hilarious travel journal entitled You Can Never Find a Rickshaw When It Moonsoons, a book filled with memorable sketches and funny and touching short anecdotes.

Willems's book is beautiful, each page dominated by a sketch and then followed by a short description of it. Most of the entries are funny and has caused me to giggle by myself this fine Sunday morning. It's a thick book by the way, since it has at least 365 entries, but it certainly was an enjoyable read.

Willems managed to start his journey from the US of course, then visiting other countries such as India, Indonesia, Luxembourg (terribly dull), Turkey, Spain, and Singapore (where all the fun stops), just to name a few. Below are two of my favorite pages from the book.

I wish that I can go traveling around the world, too, like what Willems did. I'm not so sure of the backpacking however. I love clean underwear, and the smell of hotels gives me a natural high. Nevertheless, I'm envious with all the experiences Willems had during that year, the people he met, the culture he was momentarily a part of, the food he sampled, and the invaluable lessons he learned.

Read this book if:
  1. You're a travel bug.
  2. You like big pictures in your books.
  3. You're craving to read something funny.


Sean said...

I also wish i couldve done this before i started working. By the time i do this, prolly too old to do most of the exciting things.

Peter S. said...

@Sean: I have the same sentiment!

C.B. James said...

I've no desire to do this now, but it looks like a fun read. One I'd probably enjoy more than The Accidental Tourist. ;=)

Peter S. said...

Hi, C.B. James! Yes, it is a fun read! A fun read indeed!

SariJ said...

I had the chance to travel before college. My parents freaked out at the last minute so I could not go. I often wondered how my life would be different had I been able to visit Europe. I may have come home ready for college and all that life has to offer. Sigh, the what ifs can really get to us.
Now that I am an older adult I look forward to the day my son is out of college; then I will be able to afford to see the world. I do not believe you are too old to travel, though backpacking may be out of the question.

Peter S. said...

Exactly. My 36-year-old body isn't built for backpacking anymore.