A travelogue telling the story of octogenarian Simon Gandolfi's travels across South America by motorbike, crossing the highest passes, alone and on minimal funds with no expensive gear and no back up, making friends, having fun, staying young.
This epic exploration of thirteen countries takes Gandolfi across desert and over mountains, through the Amazon forest and the length of the Appalachians. Guide books may warn of thieves, bandits, corrupt police and border officials; Gandolfi writes of the remarkable kindness and generosity he encounters. Courtesy, patience and good humour are his passports while hurry is his anathema. Whether in village or city, his joy is in leisurely conversation. Gauchos, oil workers, peasant farmers, officials, owners of vast haciendas, Venezuelan revolutionaries, students at Texas A&M - all excite his curiosity and he faithfully records their opinions while submitting his own thoughts, beliefs and fears to an often merciless inspection. Above all this is a jubilant chronicle of hope and understanding, of new friendships, glorious country, sublime architecture, good food, and ultimately, an old man's determination to surmount his years. Outrageously irresponsible and undeniably liberating, Gandolfi's travels will fire the imaginations of every traveller, young or old.