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Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Review of Half-Safe: A Story of Love, Obsession, and History's Most Insane Around-the-world Adventure

Goodreads | Eric_W Welch (Forreston, IL)'s review of Half-Safe: A Story of Love, Obsession, and History's Most Insane Around-the-world Adventure:


A short, bizarre little book, about a very bizarre adventure by a bizarre man obsessed with an idea to the exclusion of virtually everything else. Ironically, he succeeded in becoming the first and only person to ever circumnavigate the globe on land and sea in the same vehicle.  This vehicle he was so enamored of was a discard of the army, an amphibious jeep that proved so useless it was abandoned by the army and production canceled.
    Ben Carlin and his girl-friend, Elinore, were sure that a voyage around the world in this odd contraption would bring them riches and fame. It did nothing of the kind, but you have to admire Ben's single-minded compulsion despite numerous brushes with calamity he slogged on. Elinore finally gave up on the hardships (the cabin when traveling through the warmer countries would reach 170 degrees melting plastic items.)  She abandoned Ben after several years of hardship and a marriage of constant bickering.
     "Finally, on May 13, 1958—seven years and 10 months after he set out across the Atlantic—Ben drove west toward Montreal, where he and Elinore had stopped in 1948. He was older now, 45, gray in the beard, and heavier. Over the past decade, Ben had traveled 39,000 miles over land and 11,000 miles over water. He had crossed four oceans and five continents to become the only person in history to circumnavigate the globe by both land and sea in the same vehicle—a distinction he still holds"


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