Europe @ 2.4 km/h
Next week, I’ll be launching Ken Haley’s memoir-cum-travelogue, Europe @ 2.4km/h. Why 2.4km/h? Haley – a Walkley Award winning journalist – became a paraplegic in 1991 and continued seeing the world form the vantage point of his wheelchair.
This is Ken’s second memoir, after Emails from the Edge, and covers his Europe-wide journey from Russia to Portugal via the Arctic. His first stop was St Petersburg – and having just returned from a trip there (see the Travel Section), I’m looking forward to comparing our experiences.
It’s a delightful book – especially funny is his visit to Villers-Bretonneux, where Australian soldiers beat back the German army in April 1918. Ken chatted with the mayor, M. Hubert Lelieur at the local primary school about his 1984 visit to Australia. Wanting a picture of his visit, Ken asked the mayor and one of the youngsters to pose for a photo. As it happens – unknown to Ken – the boy’s father was the communist candidate standing against the conservative mayor in the next municipal election.
The launch will be on Thursday 27 October, starting at 6pm for 6:30-7pm. The venue is Gleebooks in Glebe and they ask for people to RSVP by 20 October at http://www.gleebooks.com.au.