With a 60th birthday looming, along with the demise of her 33 year marriage, Meg Noble Peterson decided it was high time to see the world. Armed with only a backpack, open ticket, empty journals, and a camera, Peterson headed for Africa & Asia for eight months of deadline-free wandering across Africa & Asia.
Chronicling her experiences in Madam, Have You Ever Really Been Happy?, Peterson covered four continents and 12 countries from the crowded streets of Cairo, to contentious apartheid South Africa, to India's Taj Mahal, to the peaks of the Himalaya. "In 1987, after a divorce, a career, and raising five kids, I decided to escape everyday life and travel around the world," she explains. Traveling on a shoestring and making plans as she went along, Peterson ventured well off the beaten path. She rode on dilapidated buses through Egypt and Zimbabwe and squeezed into hot, crowded trains in India. In Kenya, she encountered roadblocks and Masai warriors, and in Nepal she found romance with an Austrian scientist. Abandoned at 14,000 ft. by their drunken guide, the two climb to Everest Base Camp through the snow and ice, and were almost buried by an avalanche before they reached Kala Pattar at 18,500 ft.
"My memoir illustrates that it's never too late to strike out for places exotic and unknown," notes Peterson, now 78. "I didn't let the fact that I was a woman approaching sixty deter me from traveling. I had some of the most exhilarating and thrilling experiences of my life."
Via The Travel Snob.