Review of HAY BUDDY! by Lawrence F. Lihosit (Honduras)



Hey Buddy! Portraits of Friends
Lawrence F. Lihosit (Honduras 1975-77)
KDP, an Company
144 pages
August 2023
$18.00 (paperback)

Reviewed by Stephen Foehr (Ethiopia 1965-67)

Think of this collection of vignettes as a mixed bouquet of flowers, some colorful, some a bit wilted, a few missing petals. Lawrence Lihosit recounts strangers who became friends in his years of traveling and working from Alaska to Argentina, Honduras to California. He was a Peace Corps volunteer in Honduras (1975-1977).

The prose is suitable for scan reading—no multi-layered metaphors, or nifty timeline shifts, or illusions and allusions that require association. Lihosit tells the tales as he would to someone sitting on the neighboring barstool. No literary pretense, but rather people being themselves. So, enjoy the humanization without the polishing rub of a professional hand.

(One of Lihosit’s previous books, Years On and Other Travel Essays, was awarded Best Travel Book by Peace Corps Writers in 2012.)

The declarative prose is that of a reporter’s notebook, but Lihosit has an eye for details and color: “Near the triple wide entrance, there were rows of fresh flowers, petals glistening from the water that the vendors sprinkled on them. The air was filled with many smells: flowers, oil, coal dust, freshly chopped kindling, cooking beef, minced onions, and fish.”

The narratives are a bit loosy-goosy. I wished some story lines were extended to a cause-and-effect, or at least a consequence. The disjointed action lines often felt like a bridge to nowhere. What was not said left gaps of neglect. The skipping-stone sentences flew over opportunities to flesh out stories. But some tales, like one about visits from a friend dying of AIDS, raced along with economy.

Many of the vignettes are a travelogue of people surviving and thriving in seemingly untenable conditions. Riding a saddled bull through Bolivia’s flooded cattle country llanos is truly off the well-traveled road. I am glad Larry Lihosit brought back the story.

Reviewer Stephen Foehr (Ethiopia 1965–66) is the author of numerous nonfiction and fiction books. Visit:  StephenFoehr. com.


Leave a comment
  • Lawrence F. Lihosit makes the whole work his neighborhood and people all over his friends. It is a special gift he has and we all benefit. His friends feature in adventures from Alaska to Mexico and Boliva and those are just three examples. Thank you, Lorenzo.

  • I am also a returned Peace Corps Volunteer (Brasil 1969-71) and an author. I have been reading Lorenzo’s words for years now and enjoy his freewheeling style of writing. It is like sitting down with him in some bar and trading stories. His life has been adventurous and his retelling of his memories has always held my interest. I never cease to be amazed with the characters that have passed through his life and this latest book introduces us to another whole group of them. It was a fun read for me and I look forward to more of his recollections in the future.
    Thanks for the entertainment “Amigo.”

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