Christopher Many`s “Right Beyond the Horizon”
Philosophical Food for Thought8.5
Illustration, Intermezzi and Pics8
The sun is high in the blueish sky. A slight haze covers the mountain range. I can`t give any of those peaks its correct name, the 360° view is nonetheless overwhelming. I am alone up here on 1695 meteres above sea level. Beyond the horizon to my right is Germany, I presume to know. To my left beyond the Swiss Alps should be Italy. I take cheese, bread, yoghurt, plums and about one kilogram of book out of my backpack and beam myself away to Sumatra in Indonesia. As one of those creatures who have their problems with the conventional lifestyles here in Western Europe I am especially ready for the message and the stories of Right Beyond the Horizon by Christopher Many.
Right Beyond the Horizon – What is it about?
Christopher Many takes the reader on his pillion seat for a motorcycle ride from Europe to Australia. Right Beyond the Horizon (Hinter dem Horizont Rechts in German) is a long-term account of a simple overland travel from A to B that also happened to be the actual life of the author and his partner Laura.
A wide range of topics are discussed throughout the whole book and they come up naturally with the experiences on the road of the two protoganists. From politics to religion, from culture to economy, from food to happiness. Nothing is left out. But the main focus is on travel itself and on travel as a valuable and rewarding way of life.
Right Beyond the Horizon – Summary
The plot is straightforward as it is mainly chronological with only a few exceptions (e.g. flashbacks and Intermezzi). Two insatiable travelers, Chris and Laura, start (anew) in Germany and travel under their own steam to Australia. Well, they ride on Puck and Pixie, two very personalized motorbikes. They move, they stay, they make visas, they cross borders, they enjoy nature, they meet people, and so on.
The recurrent theme is travel as a valuable lifestyle and travel as one or the means of verification of knowledge gained in school, through media, friends or elsewhere. The author, Christopher Many, reasses prejudices, explains the political and economical contexts of the visited regions and advertises his own view and experiences.
Right Beyond the Horizon – Review
The content of the book suits pretty much the German subtitle Four Years on a Motorcylce from Europe to Australia (whereas the English subtitle A Motorcycle Odyssee is not that specific). However, strictly speaking, the trip ends in Bali, Indonesia. Australia and the journey to Australia seems to be part of the next book.
Many`s style of writing is direct, fluid and mostly straightforward. The content is king, the style of writing is secondary. With the many funny and charming anecdotes, on the one hand, and the very philosphical and (mostly sad) historical passages, on the other hand, the book covers a wide range of topics and appears well-balanced to me, at least. A fact that kept me reading through all five houndred and something pages, in only three days or so. And, the included picture sections were welcoming goodies.
My general impression of the book Right Beyond the Horizon is positive. The narrative skills of the author has further improved in comparison to Left Beyond the Horizon. This makes up for the less adventurous travel experiences described in Many`s second book. There is less adventure, but more philosophical treats to discover in Right Beyond the Horizon. The author advanced in age and depth, it seems.
I recommend to buy and read Christopher Many`s latest release and therewith help him directly to continue his never-ending journey through the world. But is it really never-ending? Twice he mentioned, he could imagine a life with less travel …
On my steep way down the mountain, I encounter a small herd of deer. I instantly try to tell them telepathically to get lost. Then I realized that Chris (Christopher Many) is 13` 412 kilometers beeline away if he was in Darwin, Australia, as I suppose. Chris might have been hungry and therefore an imminent threat for them. Only dogs and cats are never on his menu.