Sunday, August 30, 2009

I read real good

Book, books and more books. They arrived on Wednesday last week in little cardboard packages of joy and excitement for my reading pleasure.

The brief history section in Lonely Planet left me wanting so I followed up on some of their recommended readings.

Now I have in my possession A Nation Among Nations, Grapes of Wrath and that most famous of books about the great American journey, On the Road.

I’ve began my learned journey with On the Road and, 12 chapters in, am pleasantly surprised.

My preconceived ideas of an unreadable, posing book were wrong. So far it’s an enjoyable tale, uplifting and romantic. It’s hard not to get caught in the spirit. But how did these 20-somethings make their way in the world mooching off they old aunties? It must have been a simpler time.

I have just found out that Grapes of Wrath is also a movie! Why didn’t I know this sooner. I’m sure I’ll enjoy Joe Steinbeck’s 535 page novel, but my short attention span is made for movies. The mere fact that I’ve kept up this blogging thing for two posts is a share miracle.

What I really want to find is a good history about the Native American/First Nation people. Any suggestions?

Recommended readings please.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Our story begins...

Wouldn’t it be cool to drive across America? Rent a car in LA and drive up, down, sideways and over making our way around this grand, expansive playground?

Cool indeed.

This sums up our feelings for this trip. The word with no direct meaning, an attitude, encapsulates so much yet remains largely elusive.

Maybe this captures our “American Dream”, the American Dream.

So much has been written, said, explored around this land of opportunity. Ambition, ambivalence, achievement, disillusionment, cliques and discovery; this describes the complex mix of views held about the United States of America.

Though far away in kilometres, Aotearoa New Zealand has never seemed too far removed from America. We grew up with its landscape, culture, people and language. Our view was one of extremes and just how the image matches the reality we’ll soon see.

This is where our journey begins, an investment in the Lonely Planet USA Guidebook.

Initially we were put off by the hefty price tag (almost $70!), but we’ll get more than our moneys worth information wise.

The brick like book features everything we’ll need to put together the mechanics of our trip – I’ve already poured over the history section and recommended readings.

The best thing about travel books is just how excited they make you about your up-and-coming adventure.

Obviously Lonely Planet is not the be all and end all of travel writing, so any recommended books, websites, magazines and advice would be great!

Until next time…