This is a book that I have owned for almost a year. It's sat on my nightstand, waiting to be read, for all that time. I knew I really needed to set aside a block of time to read it, in order to give it justice.
The book? It's called The Longest Ride, My 10-Year 500,000 Mile Motorcycle Journey, by Emilio Scotto.
Emilio is an Argentenian who, thanks to a crazy trick of inflation at the time, is able to afford to purchase a brand new 1980 Honda Goldwing GL1100 Interstate. In the most naive manner ever, he decides to set off on a trip to ride around the world.
His first night out, every piece of clothing, gear and supplies that he brought with him is stolen. But that doesn't stop him, he continues on.
Knowing the GL1100 intimately, I cannot believe the incredible punishment he put this bike through. Pushing it through muddy trails in the middle of the jungle, riding through rivers that are deeper than his bike is tall, slogging through sandy dunes across the Sahara - and that's on the natural challenges he faces. From riding through active war zones to being shot at while trying to get through a checkpoint, the amazing thing that I kept coming back and asking myself is; "why isn't he dead? And how is this bike still going?" If not for the copious number of pictures throughout, I'd almost have a hard time believing some of it!
This is a big book, mine is the hardcover edition, which is an 9" x 11" book. The paperback is of similar size. A mixture of text with lots of large color pictures throughout, it is a story you won't soon forget.
My only disappointment is near the very end - when he marries, and all of a sudden the tales of adventures seem to just end, and the last chapter or so of the book reverts to just pictures with a few comments sprinkled in. The stories basically disappear - almost like he got tired of writing the book and just wanted to get it out. For that disappointment, the rest of the book is just amazing. If you want to read an incredible story, based on the experiences of a man who never quits - and who does it all on a GOLDWING - I'd highly suggest picking up this book!
Check out the book on Amazon.com
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