The Magic Bus

March 24, 2010

I bought this thinking it would be a good travel book that retraces the “hippie trail” of the 1960’s from Istanbul to Kathmandu, and it is. But it actually covers a lot more.

From the reason the hippies went on the trail – self-discovery (a great quote from a local; “self-discovery is a myth because there is nothing to find”), to the perceived flaw in their travels (another local says; “you searched and were not broken”) and a deep assessment of the impact of their travels on local society, particularly Islam. Along the way he meets hippies that never went home, returning travelers, those that came and were changed for life, and a host of very perceptive locals. Traveling and travelers have changed since the 60’s. As one traveler says, “Kathmandu’s full of people reading the Lonely Planet guide to Vietnam”.

The Hippie Trail may be no more, but its impact on Eastern society over the next 40 years is very evident.

http://www.rorymaclean.com/home.html

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