Hi, it’s Jack Wolfpac, legendary travel correspondent at the Greenygrey. While I was in the north helping with the search for Andy Wolfhol I bumped into Marc Latham, who was completing his twenty-fifth anniversary tour: celebrating the start of his independent travelling journey in 1987-88.
Twenty-Five Years Entwined On The Road at 47
Marc said the anniversary celebration had turned into one of visiting places he missed on that original journey around Europe and the Middle-East, which was published by Chipmunka in paperback and ebook in 2010/11, like my human parallel Jack Kerouac‘s On The Road was published by Viking in 1957.
Marc was originally inspired to travel, and keep a diary of his journey and experiences, by On The Road; and it was always an ambition of his to have a memoir of his travelling published. The film of the On The Road book was finally made in the last couple of years, and released in 2012. Marc also reached Kerouac’s final age of 47 last year.
Marc said he didn’t really plan an anniversary tour; it just materialised; as shown by the muddled arrangement of the places he’d visited.
He’d been planning on travelling to Norway and Sweden last September, but a cheaper flight from a more local airport persuaded him to instead buy a ticket to Dinard; a place he’d never heard of before.
Before buying the ticket, Marc saw it was a town next to Saint Malo in Brittany, a region Marc had originally missed, having travelled just south of it on his original journey, when he hitch-hiked from Paris to Bordeaux.
Marc was then choosing a marathon to run, with this year also being a marathon year in Marc’s ambition to run a marathon every three years until he’s 50 in 2016. His third passport runs out tomorrow, May 15th, so he chose to run one before that date. Barcelona seemed the best option, so Marc chose it. He remembered he’d been planning to visit the city on the first trip, but a good hitch-hiking lift took him past the city.
Then Marc finally made it across Scandinavia this month, completing the twenty-fifth anniversary tour with a trip through a region where he’d originally planned on starting his travelling journey.
He’d originally planned on taking the ferry to Bergen and travelling south from there; a ferry that has since ceased operating. Marc had since visited northern Norway and southern Sweden, but had never made it across Norway and Sweden, from Bergen on the western coast to Stockholm on the eastern coast. Marc has now completed that journey.
Travelling has of course changed over the twenty-five years of Marc’s travel career, and so has Marc. He said he tried to keep to the ethos of the original journey as much as possible, but did do it with a little more luxury and comfort, staying in hostels rather than mostly sleeping rough, and using public transport rather than mostly hitch-hiking.
Marc said he’d like to thank all those who provided, tolerated and celebrated his travelling on the current tour and all the others in the last twenty-five years; and especially those who celebrated it of course. He plans on starting a new WordPress website to look back on his travel journey, starting with the latest journeys.
I’ll certainly look forward to that!