By Byron Rogers
An viewers with an Elephant is a compendium of the oddest and so much eccentric travels - a commute booklet to set along Norman Lewis and Eric Newby for the sheer unpredictability of its encounters and its surreal comedy. yet Bryon Rogers did not enterprise to the ends of the earth to discover singular customized and heroic idiosyncrasy: he had no use to. those are trips to the center of the unusual and far away land of england. On his travels he meets the Turkish POW in British palms - an historic tortoise captured at Gallipoli and now resident in nice Yarmouth - and the teenaged elephant who has opened extra fetes and supermarkets than any television star. the following, too, are such weird and wonderful figures because the octogenerian triathlete, the guy who (before such issues have been banned) held each global consuming checklist, and the final hangman in his untroubled retirement. no matter if exploring the center of britain within the forgotten county of Northamptonshire or accompanying the final tramp throughout the wilder...
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Extra resources for An Audience with an Elephant. And Other Encounters on the Eccentric Side
Never such confidence again, this was probably the last time anyone had the nerve to admit there had been no news. For what is news? It is a product like any other that now must be gathered daily, for the cameras and the papers are waiting and the ploughman with his Sony Walkman needs briefing every hour on the world’s woes. Yes, but what is it? Ah, answering that question, to quote Larkin out of context, brings the priest and the doctor running over the fields in their long coats. News is what it was in 1180: it is the fortunes of the famous, or at least those they would like known, and the misfortunes of the rest, who have no choice in the matter.
At first he worked regularly: now the last time he remembers working was over six years ago, for five weeks in a Flintshire brickworks. ‘Quite interesting work,’ he says airily. On tramping itself he says, ‘Once you get on to the road it gets into the system. It’s like smoking: you get a craving. ’ At Machynlleth he has just lit his fire and is perched in front of it like a small Fisher King, dangling his billy can in the flames at the end of a stick. George puts his tea in the bottom of the can and allows the water to boil up through it so one can almost eat the resulting mixture with a knife and fork.
George reaches Dolgellau about midday and claims his Social Security benefit. This is the first breath of economics in his world. A tramp can claim a day’s requirement, the amount of which is left to the local office, but which in George’s case varies from 40p to 60p. At Dolgellau it is 60p. It is, in some ways, a cruel sum: just the minimum to keep a man alive. Yet to George it is a bonanza. Though he is entitled to the rate daily, the nature of his wanderings means that he rarely claims it more than twice a week.
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