[[ read online Textbooks ]] A Short Walk in the Hindu KushAuthor Eric Newby – Mariahilff.de

A very entertaining travel yarn, reeled off in that classic, disarming British manner and set in one of the few places left in the world which can still evoke mystery That strange, steeply mountainous region between Afghanistan, Anatolia, Northern India, and Nepal Nuristan and Kafiristan This travelogue has some of the best anecdotes you could ask for Misadventures galore What were they thinking Two out of shape pasty pale gits thinking they could just stroll up the sides of Mt Everest I A very entertaining travel yarn, reeled off in that classic, disarming British manner and set in one of the few places left in the world which can still evoke mystery That strange, steeply mountainous region between Afghanistan, Anatolia, Northern India, and Nepal Nuristan and Kafiristan This travelogue has some of the best anecdotes you could ask for Misadventures galore What were they thinking Two out of shape pasty pale gits thinking they could just stroll up the sides of Mt Everest It s a wonder they weren t killed.It s one of 5 6 books I picked up from a free used book stall and I m glad I grabbed it, even though I had no particular yen at the moment to read anything of this nature I m well rewarded One lone chapter only, of dry facts and figures Chapter 7 but its the most concise history of the exploration of India I ve ever encountered, and I will likely keep the book after I ve completed it solely for this reason Fast facts on all the various European expeditions of the 1800s extremely convenient Also, the diplomatic history colonial maneuvering tales of the various legations and consulates and missions An excellent time waster I first read this over 40 years ago and it may have been the book that got me interested in this genre This is travel writing as it should be, witty, dry and self deprecating two young Englishmen set out to walk through Afghanistan not that long after WW2, utterly unprepared yet prepared for anything I m only adding this note because I recently re encountered that wonderful incident Newby tells against himself where they happen to meet Wilfred Thesiger, the legendary solo explorer of the Midd I first read this over 40 years ago and it may have been the book that got me interested in this genre This is travel writing as it should be, witty, dry and self deprecating two young Englishmen set out to walk through Afghanistan not that long after WW2, utterly unprepared yet prepared for anything I m only adding this note because I recently re encountered that wonderful incident Newby tells against himself where they happen to meet Wilfred Thesiger, the legendary solo explorer of the Middle East and I d recently read in Among the Mountains that Thesiger wrote of the same incident and how very English for the two to meet like that Thesiger invited them for a meal and to spend the night in his company They were rather overawed and wondered what Thesiger thought of them, being so callow and inexperienced They found out when they unrolled their mattress pads Thesiger, who probably just hollowed out a depression in the gravel to sleep, observed contemptuously, God, you must be a couple of pansies.I love this story and the way Newby tells it You just have to remember it was written in a different age, long before political correctness and cultural sensitivity and before Afghanistan became off limits to casual travel that means it probably is impossible to ever repeat a journey like this The Hindu Kush is the western part of the Himalayan Construct at Central Asia and the top of the world Everest, K2 and similar record breakers lie farther east We Americans don t use that term so much, but consider that the Khyber Pass is part of the Hindu Kush This 1958 travel account by Eric Newby is a kind of cross between the tough it out, Wilfred MARSH ARABS Thesiger type of journal that pits a Westerner against a nearly impossible environment here the world s most forbidding m The Hindu Kush is the western part of the Himalayan Construct at Central Asia and the top of the world Everest, K2 and similar record breakers lie farther east We Americans don t use that term so much, but consider that the Khyber Pass is part of the Hindu Kush This 1958 travel account by Eric Newby is a kind of cross between the tough it out, Wilfred MARSH ARABS Thesiger type of journal that pits a Westerner against a nearly impossible environment here the world s most forbidding mountainscapes , and themodern, around the world in a bad mood account that has as much to do with the interpersonal relationships of Newby to his crew and to the rapidly changing cast of Afghani locals as with alien terrain Newby found himself stuck in postwar England in a purely decorative field, and takes on this trek mainly to relieve his boredom, or so it seems Yet when he s out in the field, suffering his most physically, he s having a hell of a good time, and he relates these contradictions memorably HINDU KUSH is sophisticated, funny, has drive, and is immensely informative about a country Afghanistan that is such a crazy quilt of religions, cultures and languages that it helped me understand why, even today, no invading empire can get a handle on it That was true at the time of THE GREAT GAME, and it s still true However, this book is just a joy to read, and after several years of low key lobbying I still hope someday to get my book buds here to read it as a group All in all British wit, intrepedity and style, scenic gorgeousness, third world encounters of an unpredictable kind if you like any of these and, of course, travel memoirs, A Short Walk in the Hindu Kush is not to be missed I do wishAmericans knew about it Page 166 of the Picador edition of A Short Walk in the Hindu Kush ranks among the funniest things I ve ever read On it, Newby quotes from a phrasebook of the Afghan Bashgali language, which apparently contains opening gambits like How long have you had a goitre , I have nine fingers you have ten , A dwarf has come to ask for food and I have an intention to kill you , which made me laugh so hard I actually dropped my copy of the book One day I hope to lay my hands on the phrasebook from Page 166 of the Picador edition of A Short Walk in the Hindu Kush ranks among the funniest things I ve ever read On it, Newby quotes from a phrasebook of the Afghan Bashgali language, which apparently contains opening gambits like How long have you had a goitre , I have nine fingers you have ten , A dwarf has come to ask for food and I have an intention to kill you , which made me laugh so hard I actually dropped my copy of the book One day I hope to lay my hands on the phrasebook from which Newby quotes here Which may prove hard, as it s over 100 years old and devilishly obscure.While not as hilarious as the quotes listed above, the rest of A Short Walk in the Hindu Kush about the author s impromptu trip to Afghanistan s Nuristan region, one of the most inaccessible parts of the world is pretty damn entertaining, too You see, the road from Kabul to Nuristan is rather mountainous, and the author and his companion aren t exactly experienced mountaineers They are an haute couture salesman and a career diplomat, respectively, whose only serious climbing experience prior to setting off for Afghanistan is a two day crash course in Wales Needless to say, this leaves them woefully unprepared for the majesty of Mir Samir, a tall and windy peak they have vowed to climb Their misadventures on the mountain, described in a witty, self deprecating and quintessentially British style, make for interesting reading So does the rest of their trip The book gets off to a slow albeit entertaining start, but once the actual expedition gets under way, it gets better with every page Newby is an excellent writer with a keen eye for character, beauty and absurd dialogue His descriptions of the scenery and the eccentric characters they come across are superb, as are his underplayed but impressive tales of woe And boy, do the author and his friend come to woe Yet despite the setbacks they persevere, and in the end they re rewarded for their perseverance with a chance encounter with the great explorer Wilfred Thesiger, who kindly calls them a couple of pansies.If I have any quibbles with the book, they concern the ending, which is rather abrupt and leaves a lot of questions unanswered The rest of the book, however, is excellent, especially the second half Highly recommended to armchair travellers and real explorers alike Maybe 3 1 2 stars if I were in a better mood This was entertaining, although maybe a little too long and detailed, and definitely slightly dated in its attitudes although not unbearably so It made good filler between other books, and took me into the terrain of Rudyard Kipling s story, The Man Who Would Be King, so that was interesting. It seems like it took me an awfully long time to get through such a short book I think it was just his writing style and the way he included detail about certain things I wasn t so interested in, such as mountain climbing technicalities.However, I did enjoy the book and stuck with it because I wanted to know what it was like in this part of the world in the 1950s as compared to the present In 1956, the author quit his job in the haute couture industry and trekked with a friend through a region It seems like it took me an awfully long time to get through such a short book I think it was just his writing style and the way he included detail about certain things I wasn t so interested in, such as mountain climbing technicalities.However, I did enjoy the book and stuck with it because I wanted to know what it was like in this part of the world in the 1950s as compared to the present In 1956, the author quit his job in the haute couture industry and trekked with a friend through a region called Nuristan, in the extreme NE part of Afghanistan They attempted, with virtually no climbing experience, to climb a very challenging peak called Mir Samir.Along the way they had a great variety of adventures and experiences, not all of them pleasant They met and traveled with people from many tribal backgrounds and learned much about local customs and traditions, some quite bizarre I especially enjoyed reading about some of the small villages they passed through that were practically idyllic at that time and are probably rubble today.The book definitely has its humorous moments He quotes from his Bashgali Kafir phrasebook, which turned out to be of questionable usefulness The funniest phrase A lammergeier came down from the sky and took off my cock Meaning rooster, not the other kind Can t help wondering when a tourist might have need of that one.At the conclusion of the trek, the author wrote I had the sensation of emerging from a country that would continue to existor less unchanged whatever disasters overtook the rest of mankind He couldn t have known how wrong he would turn out to be about Afghanistan A travel classic and very funny with it Two chaps set off to climb a mountain in Afghanistan with no prior experience of climbing mountains..what could go wrong I laughed my socks off The title of this iconic book summerizes it well One does not just take a short walk in the Hindu Kush, take a look at any map.As EN discovers early on, the beginning and the start are separate events, and the executionsomething else entirely What began as a lark takes on the nature of a grail quest, without thereligious overtones Eric and his posh, poseur friend Hugh sharewith bumbling Don Quixiotethan with the noble knights, and their destination might appear to betangible, but The title of this iconic book summerizes it well One does not just take a short walk in the Hindu Kush, take a look at any map.As EN discovers early on, the beginning and the start are separate events, and the executionsomething else entirely What began as a lark takes on the nature of a grail quest, without thereligious overtones Eric and his posh, poseur friend Hugh sharewith bumbling Don Quixiotethan with the noble knights, and their destination might appear to betangible, but theirnaivite is matched by their willingness to take great risks So here we have two pretentious ill prepared dandies floundering around the mountain, looking for a way to the top, enduring all sorts of rough demands, bullying their way along the trial.What spoiled the book for me was exemplified by this insidious class trait I can t trust EN s descriptions of the people he encounters in the wild places, no matter how bluntly detailed, because he doesn t really see them as people His writing reveals a sense of entitlement limits his vision.I am uncomfortable and limited by looking at the world through his eyes This is a good light read.Working in the clothing industry in 1950s London the author and his friends hit on the idea of having a mountain climbing adventure in Afghanistan Why not after all This is the 1950s, they d never had it so good, and there were still years to go before the Profumo scandal.Knowing nothing about mountain climbing and about as much about the Hindu Kush, they still think it s a good idea to attempt some peaks in Afghanistan but they do have a couple of days practise on a This is a good light read.Working in the clothing industry in 1950s London the author and his friends hit on the idea of having a mountain climbing adventure in Afghanistan Why not after all This is the 1950s, they d never had it so good, and there were still years to go before the Profumo scandal.Knowing nothing about mountain climbing and about as much about the Hindu Kush, they still think it s a good idea to attempt some peaks in Afghanistan but they do have a couple of days practise on a large rock in the UK beforehand view spoiler this gives you some idea of what kind of book this will be, its incredible that they all got back uninjured hide spoiler They are horribly unprepared for what they find Not just because of their almost total lack of climbing skills but also on account of the temperatures and the harsh environment At one stage they are so cold that they need one of their guides to unbutton their clothes for them view spoiler as I said this was before the Profumo scandal, had it been afterwards I would have been obliged to put that in inverted commas hide spoiler Finally they descend into Nuristan view spoiler Nuristan means land of light, the name was the result of rebranding exercise at the end of the nineteenth century as it had previously been known as Kafiristan which is the slightly less pleasant sounding land of the unbelievers, the region is currently reckoned to be a stronghold of the Taliban view spoiler which reminds me of the Almoravids who were also recent converts with a reputation for being particularly zealous hide spoiler hide spoiler and are overwhelmed by a crowd of over friendly Nuristanis, one of whom tests the shock and pressure proofness of the author s watch by dropping it into their bubbling cook pot I don t recall how well or poorly the watch performed but I doubt if many watches are soup proof.Entertaining read, won t teach you much about mountain climbing, often humorous When Eric Newby, fashion industry worker and inexperienced hill walker, decided afteryears in haute couture he needed a change he tookdays training in Wales then walked the Hindu Kush This is his account of an entertaining time in the hills