Travels with Charley: In Search of America

Monday 23 January 2012
I've never been so stunned by a book's introduction that it's halted me from reading any further. However, in the past three months, I've read the introduction to John Steinbeck's Travels with Charley: In Search of America three times, unable to venture any further. Steinbeck perfectly captures my own restlessness and urge to explore. I have a suspicion that by reading any further, I'll be forced to confront my own need to escape.
“When I was very young and the urge to be someplace else was on me, I was assured by mature people that maturity would cure this itch. When years described me as mature, the remedy prescribed was middle age. In middle age I was assured that greater age would calm my fever and now that I am fifty-eight perhaps senility will do the job. Nothing has worked. Four hoarse blasts of a ship’s whistle still raise the hair on my neck and set my feet tapping. The sound of a jet, an engine warming up, even the clopping of shod hooves on pavement brings on the ancient shudder, the dry mouth and vacant eye, the hot palms and the churn of stomach high up under the rib cage. In other words, I don’t improve." ...

1 comment:

  1. One of the many books I should have read in High School or at the latest college. Thank you for your post. You have revived my interest in this book and I must now add it to my 2012 reading list.


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