My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Backpacks and Bra Straps is the second book following Savannah and her family as they spend a year Backpacking. They are a family group; Mum, older brother Ammon (a seasoned traveller), 18 year old Bree and 15 year old Savannah. They started their journey in China and the first book “I Grew My Boobs In China” tells of the way they adapted to the people and the cultures of the countries they began to travel through. Not on any big tourist trails, they have a small daily budget and travel on buses and trains as the locals do.
This second book has them crossing into Russia with a 7 hour delay whilst the train and all its occupants are searched, making their journey from Mongolia a whacking 37 hours. You get up close and personal accounts of their travels going to amazing places like Lake Baikal, the deepest, oldest and cleanest lake in the world. Along the way they meet people who so often go out of their way to help them find accommodation, buy tickets and deal with language barriers. It returns your faith in mankind.
Their journey doesn’t go without challenges and fears, sometimes the journeys were really dangerous as mad drivers raced on roads up and down mountain sides and crossing border controls was often painstakingly slow with the need to work their way around officialdom on a number of occasions.
What is great about these books, is meeting the real people and seeing places that few others experience because of the way the have chosen to travel. Living in close proximity does have it’s own challenges which they learn to overcome, and the life lessons that Savannah has more than makes up for being taken out of her Canadian school and leaving her friends thousands of miles away.
This part of their journey ends with Bree’s friend Steph joining them for a two week hike to base camp mount Everest, a most memorable journey and I felt I travelled with them every step of the way, it meant different things to each of them when they conquered the climb and as they left the area in a helicopter for their next adventure Savannah reflects on her new word “Sihpromatum” a curse that turns into a blessing which sums up how she feels about much of this experience.
I really do recommend these books to anyone with even a slight interest in travel and the rest of the world.
View all my reviews on Goodreads.