Rating – 4.5/5
What is regular among all travel journals? They give you a placid picture of a destination, its glorious history, magnificent landscapes, and propitious interaction with locals. “Just Go Man” is also a travel journal supposed to be the same. But no, it is the opposite. Honest, diverse, one of its kind.
In this journal, Patrick has given a visceral account of his hiking and camping journey, carrying around 30 kg of weight throughout Croatia. Each chapter has primarily three things – how he found a place to set up a camp, how much he walked, and the impertinent treatment he received at the hostel/café/restaurant. It sounds incredulous how almost every restaurant and citizen gave him brusque talks. I can relate to some encounters as I had also met irascible staff in a café and public transports in Europe. However, it got balanced out by some kind people. For Patrick, no friendly people were in sight.
The positive side of this book is that it is a hilarious, honest, and easy read. Experiences of his camping and hiking with a heavy load, the adversities of subsisting each night at an unknown deserted place, are thrilling and trepidatious at the same time. It is not a “how-to” manual for camping and hiking, still, you may learn a thing or two.
The groups who may get vexatious by the trenchant words of the author are – a country, a nationality, a continent, women, Hospitality staff, old age people, restaurants, cafes, and “people”, in general. The only group who will not be offended is – dogs. Readers may find the temerity of the author too condescending and scornful. However, I appreciate that.
I do not promote all the views of the author. His thoughts on women, Government, Europeans are his own. I don’t second his thoughts on calling corona a hoax and synthetic or fake call. As per him, his belief is equipped by thorough research that he has done. In this book, he hasn’t mentioned any points of that research. It might be the topic for his next book.
There could be two types of readers of this book. One, who will read it as the author’s experience and take his opinions lightly considering all have the right to vent out the frustration of being treated contemptuously. Others, the sensitive ones, whose sentiments may get hurt by the brash and insolent comments. I am writing my review from the first category based on entertainment value and I find it enjoyable. If you are in the second category, then better to skip this book rather than taking umbrage.