In 1969, aged 22, I travelled 12,000 miles around the United States on Greyhound Buses. Half a century later I took the diary I had written and revisited the trip.
How does America, under its divisive President Trump, compare with the America of President Nixon?
Have electronic media changed bus travel?
Will my ageing body stand up to the adventure?
These questions and more will be answered
'Memories of two magical years ... a lovely evocation of heady times in America' - James Naughtie
Continued from home page
...Crossing the country on a series of uncomfortable and challenging bus journeys our narrator revisits a number of famous destinations (Pasadena, Niagara Falls, Las Vegas to name a few) but it is the more out of the way places that reveal the realities of the inequality, gun crime and immigration that characterise today’s America. His historical and touristic nuggets are fascinating, but it’s the people he meets en route who provide most insight.
Like all good journalists, he contextualises his pundits and gives their views the space to reverberate: “I kept asking those I met whether they felt optimistic about the future. There was always a pause. Then came a range of answers, from the student of political science who said, ‘I think we’re going to be the best,’ to the caution from the Pasadena police chief: ‘We want to make sure we’re not living through the last days of the Roman Republic.’
Two Summers is both a dip into America’s past and a fascinating snap-shot of the end of Trump’s first term in office. Highly recommended!
Alice Allan is author of Open My Eyes - that I may see wonderful things (Pinter and Martin)