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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
“Why do we travel?” It’s an age-old question, one that faces all of us at one time or another. Some of us travel far; others merely to the next village, but we all travel somewhere, at some time in our lives. And, what we see and experience in these travels changes us, perhaps even matures us, preparing us for what is yet to come, by helping us understand what has been. “The world is a wonderful place, full of wonderful people who are, on the whole, just like you and me. They do the best with what they have and try and make life better for their children. … We are all part of one great family. A Union.” Gordon Nicholas spent twenty years traveling around post-WWII Europe, seeking meaning for his life and the life of the world around him. His travels were epic, soul-searching journeys of body, mind, and spirit, one that he shared in his journals, paintings (yes, he was a talented artist), and souvenirs. His experiences as shared in his journals are adventures we can all learn from and appreciate.
Gordon Nicholas’s travelogue, One Man’s Europe, is a travelogue that recounts one man’s journeys through a Europe struggling to regain its foothold after two devastating world wars. With an introduction written by his son, the journals, written by Gordon during and after his travels, opens the eyes of readers around the world to a sense of adventure, but also to a better understanding of what it truly means to be a citizen of the world. That was Gordon’s ultimate goal as he sought to find himself, to place himself as one aspiring to live in a new world order, one that sees no boundaries in time, place, language, or culture. We are all one. This is a fascinating and insightful read. I love the illustrations, especially Gordon’s paintings.