Brian Kevin is a journalist who spent six months following the Thompson trail. It is a journey that begins in Colombia and ends in Rio De Janeiro in Brazil. I would love to experience some of the things that Brian Kevin describes in this book. The Thompson trail is named for the late journalist Hunter S. Thompson. He spent one year travelling the continent in the early sixties and wrote about his experiences in a book entitled The Proud American. He also wrote for articles for newspapers in Brazil and the United States I don't know much about Thompson's work, but I think just reading The Footloose American makes me want to learn more about him. I love it when one book inspires me to read other books.
I love every aspect of this book. I love the unusual foods that Brian Kevin describes. People in Colombia poach turtles and eat their meat. Brazilians like to eat fried alligator tails. Brian Kevin also ate alpaca tacos and drank an anise flavored liquor. I have never even thought of consuming these foods. I am curious if I would eat these foods and what they taste like. I learned a lot about the geography of South America. Argentina is part of South America, but Brian Kevin did not write about Argentina. I wonder how many other South American countries he left out. I want to learn more about the geography and history of South America because of this book.
I would love to visit the tourist attractions that Brian Kevin describes in this book. The Pantanal is located in Brazil. It is the largest wetland in the world. It is filled with piranha that I could try to catch. It would be an exciting experience for me. Brian Kevin glosses over some tourist attractions. I wish that he described in greater details what the ruins of Machu Picchu in Peru look like. I can look up a picture of a picture of the ruins online, but I would have appreciated a description in words. I would love to see the beauty of the Magdalena river in Colombia. I learned that it inspired the book Love In The Time of Cholera. This book did not resonate with me, but I would read again just because Colombian people have such a reverence for the book. I missed the cultural significance of the book when I read it the first time. I learned that Paraguay is a poor country, but it also an excellent place to volunteer to gain experience in the medical field. Brian Kevin observed medical professionals treat people with respiratory problems. These medical professionals started out as volunteers in the Peace Corps.
Brian Kevin also travelled to Bolivia. He writes about the fascination that Bolivians have with coca leaves. These leaves can made into the drug cocaine, which is produced a lot in Bolivia. These leaves can also be used to make a tea. I learned that this tea is a diet suppressant and a stimulant. This is the kind of tea that I would like to try for health reasons. Brian Kevin also ventured into a silver mine in Bolivia to observe miners working. I learned that mining is the number one industry in Bolivia. I would also love to visit the beaches of Rio De Janeiro to look at the beautiful people. I am motivated to learn how to speak the Portuguese and Spanish language. These languages would come in handy if I ever get the chance to visit South America. I wish that Brian Kevin would have included a map in this book. It would be nice to have a physical representation of the distance he travelled in six months. I learned so much from this book. I really enjoyed it.
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