ON A SHOESTRING TO COORG
With her five-year-old daughter as a travelling companion, Dervla Murphy, veteran of solo journeys by mule and bicycle to some of the most inaccessible places on earth, has new but no less challenging concerns on this journey to India. Setting off from Bombay, with the minimum of organization and plans to meander through the south, Dervla and Rachel stayed in fishermen’s huts and no-star hotels. Travelling by boat and by peasant-filled bus, and making myriad friends along the way, they fell in love with Coorg, the smallest of India’s provinces and stayed there for two months. Dervla Murphy’s account of this remote mountain paradise, famed for its landscapes, scented with honey, cardamon and oranges is an evocative, fresh and entertaining read.
'This is a charming book, bringing to immediate life the beautiful landscapes and friendly people of a little-known part of the subcontinent.' Geographical Journal
'Murphy is the best kind of traveller; observant, high-spirited, open-minded and impervious to discomfort, and Rachel is a honey… Their keen appreciation of India’s natural beauty makes the tiny province of Coorg appear as an earthly paradise.' The Sunday Telegraph
'Murphy spans the wide range of sensation of India, where moments of great happiness come hard upon frustration and stench.' The Guardian.
'A travel writer of rare heart and freshness – time in Asia has opened her eyes; it has not closed her heart to the romance of fresh places and faces.' The Observer
'This is a book that makes one realize how much of the real quality of life we in the West have lost.' The Daily Telegraph
'Here is a new vision of the sub-continent: a solace for anyone who has only experienced India’s sweltering, crowded deathtraps.' TLS
'A travel writer of rare heart and freshness. Since her debut by bicycle from Waterford to Delhi, Miss Murphy has gathered some moss and is a professional writer while remaining the same generous, unbiased interpreter. Hook, line and sinker she fell for Coorg and its serene Vedantic rhythms among the enchanted ramparts of the Western Ghats. So too did her daughter, who throws a devastating beam of innocence on some dark issues.' The Observer