Asia Without Borders — Crossing the South Asian Expanse: Thailand, Burma, Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan, Maldives, Sri Lanka and Bhutan
by Steve Kaffen (Russia 1994-96)
SK Journeys Publisher
Reviewed by D.W. Jefferson
I read a travel book for one of two reasons. Either when seeking up-to-date information on traveling in a given country or region — a guidebook — or when I primarily want to enjoy the story of traveling through a region or visiting a specific place at a given time in the past. Steve Kaffen made his journey across South Asia in the 1980s. His book is 284 pages, and over 150 photos from 9 countries constituting a treasure trove of travel related stories.
Reading this book is like going to the annual membership gathering of your local RPCV group (Here in the Midwest this will most likely be a potluck.) and happening to sit at a table where a fellow RPCV is entertaining everybody within earshot with really great anecdotes about their Peace Corps related travels. A person who, unlike the rest of us, has taken both notes and photos during their travels so the stories are more complete and consistent than ours.
Among many interesting anecdotes, Kaffen met and spent time with the great Sherpa mountaineer and guide Tenzing Norgay, one of the first two individuals known to have reached the summit of Mount Everest. He accomplished this feat along with Edmund Hillary on May 29, 1953.
Join the author on his journey across South Asia. Marvel at the historic sites and scenic landscapes. Meet the locals and have interesting, and humorous adventures along the way.
The author’s warm and lighthearted style engages the reader as his travel partner, while vivid descriptions and original photos capture the joy and spirit of traveling in this fascinating region.
D.W. Jefferson was a Peace Corps agriculture volunteer in El Salvador (1974-76) and Costa Rica (1976-77). A blog about his Peace Corps years is at: dwjefferson.blogspot.com He is currently retired from a career in computer software engineering.