Friday, January 20, 2012
BIG BACKPACK - LITTLE WORLD by Donna Morang
A free-spirited older woman teaches English around the world.
This is a memoir of the infectious love for travel of a woman who is determined to get the most out of her life. Unlike the majority of ESL teachers, the author began teaching English abroad in her fifties and has spent over ten years wandering the globe in search of adventures to have, beers to drink, and students to love. Unlike many travel memoirs, she isn't running from anything and runs toward as many new experiences as possible. The author clearly loves people and this book is full of quirky characters and funny, personal stories. This book is unique among backpacker tales because of the way Morang's age affects her relationships with people.
Morang spends most of her time in Mexico and various Central and South American countries, with jaunts to Southeast Asia in between. Adventure and hilarity ensue because she is not afraid to try anything. She doesn't mind working for low wages and living in uncomfortable conditions as long as she can visit the beach and enjoy meals with her many friends. It was inspiring to read about someone with seemingly inexhaustible enthusiasm for new places and people. She is the type of person I would want to meet on my travels.
Morang's writing style is personable and funny. However, this is a self-published book, and unfortunately there are typos and occasional errors. This isn't necessarily a reason not to read the book, but it was noticeable. I also found some inconsistencies that made it feel like journal entries that had been compiled rather than a cohesive narrative. However, the interesting stories and the author's sheer optimism prompted me to keep reading. I have no hesitation recommending this book to travelers and aspiring ESL teachers in need of inspiration and a good laugh.
Donna Morang's blog
I received a free copy of this ebook in exchange for an honest review. The Kindle edition is $4.95.
How do you think being an older traveler would differ from seeing the world as a 20-something?