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18 March 2006


Sandi Toksvig finds out the latest news from the hungry cyclist Tom Kevill Davies , currently in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, on his epic cycling and munching journey round the Americas.

Many travellers choose to follow in the footsteps of someone who has made the journey previously; Sandi hears of three very different approaches to this method of travel.

In 1989 Jasper Shackleton set off to journey in an open boat halfway across the Pacific to follow the route of Captain Bligh cast adrift by the Bounty mutineers.  Author Tony White has been re-treading the path of Rebecca West's travels in the Balkans on the eve of the Second World War and writer Mark Mason went to Turin to place himself in the very spots where the minis raced round in the film the Italian Job.

Presented by Sandi Toksvig

Galleria Subalpina, Turin (Copyright: Mark Mason)

Photo: Galleria Subalpina in Turin, one of the locations for the film The Italian Job.

Tom Kevill Davies is a freelance graphic designer and part-time food writer based in London.

A year ago he set off on his cycle from New York his final destination is Rio, fifteen thousand miles later (up to Toronto, across Canada to Vancouver down the west coast of the USA to Mexico, through central America down the west coast of South America and then over land through Brazil). He will have cycled through 15 countries sampling food along the way in search of the perfect American meal. He is raising money for Macmillan cancer relief.

The Hungry Cyclist

Jasper Shackleton is distantly related to Sir Ernest Shackleton and like his namesake has completed one of the great open boat voyages.  In 1989 on the 200th Anniversary of the event, he recreated the journey undertaken by Captain William Bligh in the Pacific after he was cast adrift by the mutineers on the Bounty.  A woodworker by trade Jasper set about building a replica of the launch that Bligh had used.

Tony White is literary editor of the Idler and works for the Arts Council. He has written a number of novels including the recent critically acclaimed Foxy-T and has co-edited Croatian Nights a collection of Croatian, Serbian and British fiction.

Tony first went to Yugoslavia in 1982 in a bus on the way to Greece and was much taken with the place. The book he followed was Rebecca West's seminal travelogue Black Lamb and Grey Falcon: A Journey through Yugoslavia which was written on the eve of 2nd World War and a classic of travel literature giving an account of a trip to Yugoslavia in 1937, interwoven with Balkan history and ethnography.

Another Fool in the Balkans: In the Footsteps of Rebecca West
Publisher: Cadogan Guides
ISBN: 1860111513

Mark Mason is an author and journalist. His novels include What Men Think About Sex, The Catch, The C Words; he's also written Bluffer's Guide To Football, Bluffer's Guide To Relationships, the Little Book Of Beckham, 101 Things To Do If Your Boyfriend Makes You Watch The Football. 

Mark's idea of a good holiday is to go in the footsteps of films that he loves by visiting their locations. He went to Turin last summer to tour in the places featured in the Italian Job and then returned via the Cote d'Azur and the eastern side of France by car following the route used by Edward Fox in The Day of the Jackal

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Sandi ToksvigSandi Toksvig:
The daughter of a foreign correspondent, Sandi has been travelling all her life more info

John McCarthy John McCarthy is a widely travelled journalist and presenter with a particular interest in the Middle East.
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