Travels with Willie: Adventure Cyclist

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9780965679282: Travels with Willie: Adventure Cyclist
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Watch enough cable news and your view of the world will be clouded by fear. Hop on a bike and that view will brighten drastically. Travels with Willie is about finding adventure and facing fear, embarrassing blunders and language barriers, ice cream and kindness, Cuba and Colombia, Turkey and Thailand, the world's steepest street and the world's cheapest engagement ring, catching a thief and losing a zebra, a father's touch and a farmer's embrace, buying time and spending another night. Fellow bicycle travelers will smile with recognition, and arm-chair travelers might find themselves wandering into a bike shop, looking for a passport to adventure.

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About the Author:

WILLIE WEIR is a columnist for Adventure Cyclist magazine and a traveling commentator for public radio station KUOW in Seattle. His articles on adventure travel have earned him gold and bronze Lowell Thomas Awards from the American Society of Travel Writers. He speaks at schools, universities and events around the country, advocating the bicycle as the world s best travel vehicle, as well as a vehicle for social and environmental change.

Review:

Most books about cycling end up being about nothing other than cycling--sort of like what The Great Gatsby might have been like if it were a how-to about making money off moonshine and gambling. Willie Weir's Travels With Willie is one of the rare bike books that gets it right. The 256-page paperback distills the best of Weir's columns for Adventure Cyclist magazine (the house organ of the touring and travel group Adventure Cycling Association). The fact that Weir has ridden around the globe is what will draw the interest of cyclists; what makes it satisfying is that some of the most engaging parts occur off the bike--scenes that capture the universal conditions we all face when we're traveling the world, or simply when we're trying to figure out who are we. Weir writes about the humbling experience of wrongly complaining about being overcharged for a local delicacy, about trying to lure strangers into conversations just so he can brag about his travels (then getting one-upped), but also about finally understanding his father, proposing to his wife (and subsequently getting robbed of the coin that was a stand-in for an engagement ring), and traveling the world in the age of terrorism. ... Weir's unadorned, honest storytelling and eagerness to see beyond his handlebar make this a must-buy for anyone with a decent cycling library. -- --Bicycling Magazine

Weir's writing describes the experience of riding a bicycle rather than the logistics. His new book is a collection of his columns, and nowhere in the paperback s pages does this seasoned bicycle traveler even mention mileage, equipment, routes or the type of bike he rides. Instead, Weir describes facing fear and finding adventure; guardian angels and going the wrong way; the kindness of strangers; communicating without a word; and the privilege of travel. --Momentum Magazine (Sept-Oct 2009)

Willie Weir may be the most effective and inspiring advocate in the USA for international bicycle travel, but his message is about much more than bicycling. --Edward Hasbrouck, author of The Practical Nomad: How to Travel Around the World

Weir's writing describes the experience of riding a bicycle rather than the logistics. His new book is a collection of his columns, and nowhere in the paperback s pages does this seasoned bicycle traveler even mention mileage, equipment, routes or the type of bike he rides. Instead, Weir describes facing fear and finding adventure; guardian angels and going the wrong way; the kindness of strangers; communicating without a word; and the privilege of travel. --Momentum Magazine (Sept-Oct 2009)

Willie Weir may be the most effective and inspiring advocate in the USA for international bicycle travel, but his message is about much more than bicycling. --Edward Hasbrouck, author of The Practical Nomad: How to Travel Around the World

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