Spurred on by romantic childhood memories of names such as Prester John, the Queen of Sheba and the Lion of Judah, and by a vision of Ethiopia as beautiful, dangerous and mysterious, Dervla Murphy set out on a hazardous trek through the Ethiopian highlands. She travelled against official advice and, during the gruelling journey, she was robbed ...Read MoreSpurred on by romantic childhood memories of names such as Prester John, the Queen of Sheba and the Lion of Judah, and by a vision of Ethiopia as beautiful, dangerous and mysterious, Dervla Murphy set out on a hazardous trek through the Ethiopian highlands. She travelled against official advice and, during the gruelling journey, she was robbed three times. Yet the Ethiopians were usually hospitable and her dependence on them and increasing familiarity with their way of life broke down the barriers. Her growing affection for and understanding of another race became "the real achievement and richest reward" of her journey. This is the story of her journey.Read Less
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UNUSED, LIKE NEW, NOT EX-LIBRARY, 281 pages. (Dervla Murphy set out with her pack-mule, Jock, on a hazardous trek through Ethiopia's remote and hostile regions. Inspired by stories of Prester John and the Queen of Sheba, she hoped to find there beauty, danger, solitude and mystery. Instead, she encountered rough terrain, exhaustion, illness and the disorder of the Ethiopians domestic affairs all of which she conquered with endurance and good humour. Despite being robbed three times, Murphy found the Ethiopian highlanders were usually hospitable. Out of her dependence on them and her increasing familiarity with their way of life grew a close and warm understanding. On reacting Addis Ababa, she concluded that affection for Ethiopia's peoples was the richest reward of her journey. One of the supreme virtues of Miss Murphy as a travel writer [is that] she is human. She needs her drink; she craves her cigarettes; she is capable of losing her temper; she smuggles things through customs. A more virtuous figure would be far less endearing DAILY TELEGRAPHDervla Murphy's credentials are more than a brave heart and strong calf muscles the fruit of these mature wanderings for my money puts her among the select travel writers of the last two decades OBSERVERAn admirable woman She has a romantic soul and a keen eye TIMES LITERARY SUPPLEMENTMurphy's observation is acute, her self-effacement is disarming SUNDAY TIMES'Dervla Murphy must be top of the intrepid class: conventional travel writers seem impossibly pallid by contrast. ' (Financial Times )
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