The Travels arrived!


How many fellow travellers have I known? I cannot count.
How many corners of the Earth, I cannot tell.
Now that my wanderings east and west are done,
There is but one corner left: my grave.

A traveling poet, 11th Century.


So here it is, the much anticipated book of mine. The Travels of Ibn Battutah, edited by Tim Mackintosh-Smith.

Perhaps you might ask, why am I so interested, then I will answer: For it is a book, despite all criticisms (of Ibn Battutah recording inaccurately some accounts and all), is a great book of one traveler, who was not at all the same as any other travelers.

I am not going to produce a very great travelogue if I were to be at that particular place for a day or two, for a week or two. It takes you months, or maybe years to understand the culture of one place for a good undestanding to be developed, and that was what is special about this one traveler named Ibn Battutah.

And of course, being particularly interested in pre-1924 history, which I know is far from utopian instead of Muslim having a caliphate back then (while some of us think that before 1924, everything was perfect), I am more than intrigued to read an account of a person who was alive at that time.

And for him, Ibn Battutah, being a man, just a normal man having flaws here and there, I don’t expect everything to be true. Adding the fact that the book was written from the story he told (meaning to say that is is not he who wrote it, but it was he who told it), I keep some spaces in mind for peculiarity.

After all, reading a book is better than not reading at all.

p.s. Oh, I can’t help. But I have to save this book for my journey home on 2nd of June..

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