SO YOU WANT SOME PHOTOS
Click for high-resolution. Please credit photographers if listed. For photos of my journey, please visit the Map & Photos page; for high-res versions, email me.
Book cover, courtesy Perigee Books.
Photo by Rebecca Celis
Photo by Maren Stoddard
SO YOU WANT TO TALK
I'd love to chat about the book or any of the broader ideas it discusses. Like:
The history of travel. How did the Grand Tour go from being a bold adventure for travelers of my mother's era to a cliché today? How has the tourist experience changed in the last generation--and what hasn't changed at all?
The surprising joys of staying firmly ON the beaten path. How to find the hidden, unexpected delights in the midst of the crowds.
Postcards, aerograms, and handwritten letters. Why they're great, how they're different from a digital message, and why they seem to be making at least a small comeback. (I'm still waiting for the trend piece, though.)
The benefits and drawbacks of information-overload and constant connection on the road. My trip was an exercise in willful ignorance, one that went against our modern tendency to research obsessively and Tweet and blog our every move, relying on a digital lifeline rather than our own wits or the people in the place to which we've traveled. It paid off as I rediscovered the joys of surprise and serendipity.
"Authenticity" and travel in an age of immigration and globalization. Beaten-path cities may not have the traditional charms of remote villages, but because they're so diverse and vibrant, they have a remixed culture all their own, one that is confounding and charming and maddening all at once.
SO YOU JUST WANT THE BASICS
Book specs: Paperback, 288 pages
Publisher: Perigee Books / Penguin
Publication date: April 3, 2012
ABOUT MY TRIP
Cities visited (11 total): Florence, Paris, Amsterdam, Brussels, Berlin, Munich, Zurich, Vienna, Venice, Rome, Madrid
How much would$5 in 1963 be worth in 2011? About $36.75. (source)
I blogged about my trip while I was on the road. Read my posts here.
AUTHOR VITAL STATS
Age: Born April 1981. You do the math.
Grew up in: Minneapolis
Currently lives in: Minneapolis
Education: Carleton College, in beautiful Northfield, Minnesota. Degree in American Studies.
More info (much, much more) at my web site: www.douglasmack.net
Still have questions? Just ask.
Self-portrait in Florence.