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Description de l’éditeur
In this witty and entertaining collection of travel tales, an acclaimed journalist explores his obsession with trains--and what his rail journeys have taught him about culture and identity.
"I've gone around the world in installments. Every trip has been a revelation. I've watched regions, nations, and continents change moods and I've met more people on trains than in forty years of airplane flights. Every train trip has been a spectacle. Trains are stages, cafés, bazaars. The only talk show that will never go off the air..."
Beppe Severgnini has spent his life traveling the world, and not just because he's a journalist; he's a passionate, unflagging train buff. Off the Rails recounts some of his favorite trips across Europe, Australia, Asia, and the United States, each journey bringing readers not only to a different place but to a different time, from his honeymoon on the Trans-Siberian Express (in a four-person compartment!), to a winding journey from Russia to Turkey during the last summer of communism, to a recent coast-to-coast trip with his son from Washington, D.C., to Washington State.
Off the Rails is the perfect getaway for anyone with a touch of wanderlust, who dreams of escape or just likes to laugh. Filled with memorable characters and perceptive observations, it demonstrates--hilariously--what unites us.
With the world in chaos and life in perpetual fast-forward, it's always the right time to hop on board with Beppe Severgnini and meet your charming, hapless, quarrelsome, romantic, shifty, quirky, endearing neighbors.
Italian journalist Severgnini (Ciao, America!) recounts numerous train adventures in his funny and perceptive memoir. Between 1986 and 2017, Severgnini, a train buff, logged thousands of rail miles on several continents; whether it's tackling the three-day trip from Sydney to Perth, Australia ("the most isolated metropolis on earth"), or traveling with a Donald Trump bobblehead statuette between Naples and London, Severgnini's observations keep the narrative going (Donald Trump and Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi "both have a troubled relationship with their egos and their hair"). Severgnini humorously comments on revolting railway food, sub-par cleanliness on the Trans-Siberian Express, and the availability of Wi-Fi during a trip across America with his 20-year-old son ("it appears like an oasis in the telecommunications desert and then vanishes just as suddenly"). "Every train provides a narrative, included in the price of the ticket," Severgnini says, explaining why trains are his preferred mode of travel time to think, chances for meeting and talking with strangers, and being passively transported across the remarkable landscapes "without feeling we're lazy." This is a not-to-be-missed book for railroad fans or travelers of any mode.