Saturday, 2 June 2018

#BookReview: It Was A Happy Trusting World, Then by Vilas Kale

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Title: It Was A Happy Trusting World, Then
Author: Vilas Kale
Publisher: The Write Place Publishing 
Published on: January 2018
Pages: 130
Binding: Paperback
ISBN: 9789387282025


It Was A Happy Trusting World, Then is the story of a three-month hitch hike through fifteen countries in 1971 by three youngsters from Nagpur in Central India to Europe and back. Inspired by Western hitchhikers, the cousins Vilas, Kumar and Vidula plan out their own trip. Travelling on a shoestring budget, they complete the journey by ship, bus and friendly lifts. Starting in Bombay, where they board a ship, the narrative takes us through vignettes of lands of a wholly different political era. 


The cover page of the book is very simple having an image of a red hitchhiker bag on road. The cover page is very subtle in the natural shades of blue and fawn and I liked it a lot.


It Was A Happy Trusting World, Then revolves around a three month long journey of three youngsters - Vilas, Kumar and Vidula, who decided to go on hitch hike from Nagpur to Europe covering around fifteen countries. Through this book, the author Vilas Kale has shared his own experience of this long adventure trip.

The book is very different written in a simple and in a lucid manner. It is very engaging as it is author's own experience, with everything written in a great detailed manner, mentioning about each and every place they stayed at and what they did at that place. I was amazed and I really liked how the author mentioned about everything in such a great manner as the journey was a long time back in the 1970s.

The author has very efficiently discussed about the condition of India back then as at that time India was poor and the developments were taking place but at a slow pace. The author has compared India with the other countries. And, I really appreciate how the author has put the dates of his travel like on which date he was in travelling to which country just like a personal diary.

The title of the book is very well justified as the author has talked about the various countries and their condition back in the 1970s, also mentioning about their cultures. It gives the reader an insight about the world back then. Like how the countries like Iran, Syria are very beautiful having beautiful places but nowadays, only war stories about these countries come up. The discrimination the Indians faced back then and the conversation between the Indians and the Pakistanis are also mentioned.

Lastly, there are a lot of photographs enclosed of various places the three youngsters visited and the various travel memories such as postcards and stamps as well as Itinerary. The photographs made my reading a lot more interesting because I was able to connect a lot with it. 

Overall, for me it was a different read which I enjoyed reading a lot. The book was a journey for me as well. I would recommend this book to everyone.

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Vilas Kale, 66, leads an active life as a social worker and businessman in Nagpur (Maharashtra) India, where he was born, brought up, educated and is settled. He has been able to successfully balance his business with his social work and activism and also pursue his many hobbies including a passion for travelling. The travel bug bit him early in life and he has travelled extensively in India and some 80 countries abroad. His wife Neeta shares his enthusiasm for travel. Vilas and Neeta like to meet people, share experiences, savour local culture and enjoy local food wherever they travel. He is an absolute vegetarian since his birth.

*I received  a copy of the book from the author in exchange of a review. Thank You.

Thank You
Happy Reading!

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