The White Nile Diaries
by John Hopkins
Editor: I.B.Tauris & Co. Ltd.
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It all started at the Oyster Bar at Grand Central Station, New York, Princeton in 1961- two graduates – John Hopkins and Joe McPhillips – returned from Peru.Reluctant to return to a life of work, marriage and mortgage loans, they are tempted by a mysterious letter from KenyaCovering a plan to drive a motorcycle across North Africa, they buy a smooth, white BMW R50 and paint its name – “The White Nile” – on the fuel tank, in honor of the road, which they intend to follow.In a limpid and elegant prose, Hopkins describes mortal deserts salts and Oasis laden with figs, disappeared travelers and funerals of young Tunisian youth killed in the fight for independenceIt evokes the ghosts of the ancient Rome of Leptis Magna and Lotus Eaters Homer in Djerba.They meet armed militiamen in the Tunisian desert and sow Libyan border patrols, barely escaping from their lives.They climb the pyramids of Giza at dawn and climb the Desert Express through the deserts of the Nubian desert, but their final adventure, Sam Small Impala Ranch, is perhaps the most surreal of all-
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