“When you come back home, you are no longer the same.”
Some books should be read with the eyes, appreciated with the sense of smell and enjoyed with the mouth. They are the books that tell of travels to distant lands. The chapters are marked by the flavors narrated and the different degree of emotions that the writer-traveler tries to convey on paper. A difficult task because describing the beauty and difficulty of a journey is as demanding as climbing a mountain with your bare hands.
Dirty clothes, searching for food while walking on off-beaten roads, the importance of writing letters at home and feeling that all is well are the essence of this type of experience.
As the title suggests, the book proposes the journey made by the author on the Trans-Siberian in 1978, a daydream, between legend and myth. A lost world and a lost way to travel, a time when leaving for the unknown was a feat and courage was the first stamp in the passport.
A period in which information found in books, encyclopedias and maps were the most important travel companions from which one never had to part. If you add communication difficulties to the sum of the difficulties, because in many parts of the Asian hinterland few spoke English, then you have a vague idea of the blurred line between travel and adventure.
Reading takes your heart and leads you to continue with your head bowed over the pages that flow like kilometers under the author’s feet. Years later, we appreciate the positive changes the world has experienced: no cold war to divide the world into two self-destructing blocks, the relative ease of crossing borders, even when you decide to travel by land. The other side of the coin is the homologation of places and men in movies already seen but with local actors.
When we got to the last page we started playing with the globe, fantasizing about the next ticket to buy.
Pellegrino Angelo, Transiberian, La vita felice, Milano, 2013