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Not yet ready to return to the States after her service as a U.S. Peace Corps volunteer, Heather Andersen sets her dream of exploring southern Africa by bicycle in motion. Her group dwindles to just two before the trip even starts and she finds herself traveling with a man she’s never met before. Tension between them builds until the inevitable split, and Heather continues on alone through unfamiliar lands. With great appreciation and understanding, she vividly describes her surroundings, the colorful people she encounters, and the adventure of traveling in foreign cultures as a solo woman on a bicycle. With the question of whether it’s safe never far from her mind, she forges her own path through southern Africa—and life. Along the way, she trusts her intuition and the kindness of strangers, appreciates the rhythm of an unscheduled life on the road, and rediscovers her commitment to leading the life she wants. If you’ve ever wanted to go somewhere completely unknown to you, or just want to experience it through someone else’s eyes, I Never Intended to Be Brave will take you there.Sp 254p
I've travelled in Africa and am sure that I would not be brave enough to bicycle alone there. This book was a very good read. She writes well. It's interesting, entertaining, and engaging. I would've enjoyed a bit more description of Africa, but that's a personal thing. She certainly does hit the high points of bicycling challenges there. I'd also have enjoyed learning her resources for planning her trip. She mentions some of her planning but not the sources. I do highly recommend it for opening our eyes to the potential.
A 'mst read' cycling adventure
A customer from Boston, MA USA on 3/6/12
In I Never Intended to be Brave, Heather Andersen takes us with her on a thrilling and inspiring journey, a woman bicycling alone across southern Africa. Her vivid word pictures, humble courage, and engaging style are reminiscent of pioneer travel journalist Joshua Slocum in Sailing Alone Around the World.
And, she deftly brings the reader the sense of presence Robert Persig observed in Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, "On a cycle the frame is gone. You’re completely in contact with it all. You’re in the scene, not just watching it anymore, and the sense of presence is overwhelming." Andersen, on a bicycle rather than a motorcycle like Persig, was even more in the scene.We're fortunate that she is sharing her journey with us. It’s a wonderful, moving story.