Oregon writer, Rain Trueax, and Oregon painter, Diane Widler Wenzel co-author Rainy Day Thought. Diane generally posts on Wednesdays and Rain on Saturdays. There may be extra days or changes as situations warrant. Comments are always welcome and appreciated as it turns an article into a discussion.

Friday, July 02, 2010

Exploring the Unknown

When I saw the book, The Lost City of Z by David Grann, at Costco, I couldn't resist it. A true story of an explorer, Percy Fawcett, who disappeared in the Amazon in 1925 which has led to a mystery as to exactly what happened to him. It is an Amazon mystery that still leaves one questioning several things and it's not just the lost explorer.

The book is a good read as it incorporates the story of Fawcett along with the writer's own adventure in tracking down what happened. It kept my attention all the way and made me sorry when it ended.

As long as I can remember I have found such stories of explorers to be of interest. I have zero interest in being an explorer myself but I like hearing about those who have dared to brave the unknown. They have left behind a record of a world that often today is gone and except for their daring the unknown, there would be no stories left of those people. Not all who go into the wilderness go with good intentions. Generally explorers do.

I would check such books out of the library and sometimes buy one like "In Search of the Primitive" by Lewis Cotlow (which is still in my bookshelf) where the authors would tell of how they got where they went, why they went as best they know it, and information on those who lived there.  Generally they liked the people they were meeting and their respect showed in their stories.

Fawcett was such a man and one who became obsessed with the jungle, with the Amazon and the possibility of a lost city that he named Z. The story is about him, about those who tried to find him, and finally the author as he, not an explorer by nature but more an explorer of human motivations who could not let a story go once he began to track it down. It's a very good read. Oh wait, I already said that.


Ingineer66 said...

Sounds interesting. I am reading The Last Place On Earth, about Amundsen and Perry racing to the South Pole. It is very interesting to just see how far we have come in the last 100 years in our technology and culture.

Rain said...

This book brings that out also with how before they figured out latitude and longitude, it was how many days it took to get somewhere. It's very amazing the exploration that happened before the tools came into being that made it easier. It still would have its hazards as stepping out beyond all the comforts we daily depend on. In the case of the Amazon, the dangers are still all waiting for those who go beyond civilization. I did research afterward about the preserves for the indigenous peoples.

Ingineer66 said...

Whoops I was typing and thinking too fast. It was Amundsen and Scott that raced to the South Pole. Perry went to the North Pole.

On the note of early exploration. I watched a show on Nat Geo last week called Who really discovered America. It was very interesting. One of the theories is that European seal hunters were in North America up to 10,000 years before the Paleo-Indians came down from the Bering Straight land bridge. They then assimilated with the Indians.

When do I get my casino? ;-)