Friday, 16 November 2018

Close Encounters of the Traveling Kind by Amanda Jayne - Blog Tour, Excerpt, Guest Review & Giveaway

This collection of near-death (and a few almost-near-death) stories take you on adventures in Africa, South America, Nepal, Japan and Thailand. Close Encounters with an angry snake, the edge of an abyss, an unfriendly African tribe, a fake guide or two, a mean Dutch man, a magic whirlpool, a nasty case of Typhoid and a severe case of mountain stupidity are told with the confidence of a traveler who has discovered that no matter what happens, everything works out in the end.

Guest Review by Betty B.
I love to travel and have done quite a bit of it.  I like to go on
gentle walks, sun bath, and even take a dip in the ocean.
However, I like to travel in comfort and am not an adventure
traveler.  I went camping once and vowed never to do it again.
That said, I love to read about adventure travel. So, you
could say that I am an armchair adventure traveler.
Amanda Jayne has done a lot of adventure traveling and has
written a memoir about her experiences in ‘Close Encounters
of the Traveling Kind’.  The thing to know is that it is a lot
about mishaps that could have taken her life, so it ups the
ante on the adventure part! There is a kind of ‘moral to the
story’ for every adventure.  
In the lead essay Jayne is teaching in Japan and during a
night of drinking she and other teachers decide it would be a
great idea to climb Mount Fuji.  They are all to meet and the
base but only Amanda and one other teacher show up.
Their inexperience shows from the start and their lives end up
in jeopardy.  If they would have done what the Japanese
climbers had done, they most likely would have not had
problems. The moral is, do what the natives are doing! On a
trip in the Amazon in Bolivia, one of the morals was “always
go to the toilet in twos”. In Northern Thailand, on a rafting trip,
the moral was “don’t believe everything Google says” and
“never trust a cocky guide.”
As you probably guessed from my examples, this book is very
humorous.  It had me laughing so hard at times that I had to
run to the bathroom in fear that I would wet my pants.  Ms.
Jayne really has a writing style that makes you feel like you
were there. Her poetic prose and the way she captures
nature in words is inspiring.  If you love adventure travel, even
if it’s just from an armchair, I highly recommend you read
‘Close Encounters of the Traveling Kind.’ You will not be
disappointed!  I give it 5 out of 5 stars.


From Chapter 7 - A series of Unfortunate Events, South Africa
to Lesoto 1990

I was shaking so hard it took a good hour to calm down, which
meant I didn’t even question where we were going until then.
It was pitch black outside now and must have been many
hours (as the guy in the information office in Durban said)
since we’d left. I hadn’t eaten or drunk anything. I sidled over
to the edge of the seat and looked at the guy who’d spoken to
me earlier.
 “Where are we going?” I whispered. It was the first time I’d
noticed that no-one had gone through the border.
He whispered back through the dim lights on the bus. “Not
allowed in. Wrong tribe. Must go another border. Many hours.”
And that was the end of our conversation.  

We bumped and jogged our way over dirt roads for another
few hours. My headache had progressed and was splitting my
head in two. I needed water, but there wasn’t any so I’d have
to wait. I had no idea where we were, I just needed to hold on
and get to the next border crossing. My thoughts ran wildly
through my throbbing head and my nervous system screamed
along with the squeaks and screeches of the bus. Then we
stopped. The engine died down, lights went dark and
everyone gradually filed off the bus in silence. I peered into
the inky blackness through the window. Where were we?
There was nothing here. They were probably going to the
bathroom again, but I had no desire to go and stayed on the
bus, waiting. No one came back. About half an hour later,
head pounding, I decided to see where they’d gone and
whether there was any liquid there. I was getting desperate.

We were in a field, as far as I could make out. I rounded the
bus, there was nothing here. As I came back to the front of
the bus, I noticed a light burning, way in the distance. I guess
that’s where they are, I shrugged, and my desperation for
something to drink made me head for the light.

As I approached the glow, I heard music, drumming that
seemed to beat with my heart, faster and faster. This time it
was like something from a movie. I appeared in the doorway
to find a large open area on my left where men were
drumming, chanting and dancing in tribal dress. On my right,
were benches where men and women were drinking and
The drumming stopped.
The chanting died.
The chatting faded away.
Everyone turned to stare at me in silence. I gazed out in
horror at the sea of wide, unfriendly eyes and tried to make
my brain work out the best thing to do. Running would be
stupid, I settled on showing I wasn’t a threat instead.
The bar was at the back of the structure. I took a deep breath,
steadied myself and walked through the crowd to the bar. The
crowd parted like the red sea. Still no-one made a sound.  
The journey seemed to take an age, I was floating, then I
heard my voice as though it were coming through a loud
 “I’d like a coke please.”
A shadow on my right made me look up. A tall African man in
tribal dress, at least six foot three loomed over me. He looked
me in the eyes, put a finger to his throat and gestured slicing
it from one side to the other.
I ran.
I legged it out and back across the field. I could hear people
running after me and men shouting to each other. I ran. That
same strength I’d felt only hours earlier roared up from deep
within and I sprinted faster than I’d ever imagined I could. The
voices were still behind me, closer, shouting and laughing now.
I could see the bus - but running onto the bus would only trap
me as I couldn’t close the door, so I turned towards a small
hut I could just make out through the first light of a murky
dawn. 20 meters now, 10, 5, I prayed it had a lock inside as
the sounds of the men behind me got closer.
I grabbed at the door, flung my heaving body inside, shut it
and - thank God - locked it just as one of the men reached me
and started banging and shaking the door. It seemed to be
holding up as they hammered on it so I turned to see where I
was. The stench hit me like a brick wall. Tiny streams of dawn
poked through the ceiling onto a large heap of diarrhoea
around a hole in the ground. I threw up again and again,
adding to the mess of bodily fluids, listening to the sound of
the men talking and laughing outside the locked door.
When my stomach stopped heaving, I waited.

About Amanda JayneClose Encounters of the Traveling Kind by Amanda Jayne

Amanda Jayne never wanted to live a normal life, which she has achieved with resounding success so far. She realised books were magic and could take you to other places, times and universes when she was very young and wanted to become an author immediately. However, she waited several decades so she could do other things first.
Her love for travel began with a six month South Africa trip at age 18 and continued with short jaunts in Eastern Europe during the years she worked in the mental health field.
As soon as she realised offices, rules and regulations were not her thing, she left her job and her native England to find out more about the world and the amazing array of people living in it. She spent 10 years living and travelling in various countries and finally returned to the UK in 2009 after gaining a masters in Spiritual Psychology in the USA and walking 1,200 km around the 88 temples pilgrimage in Shikoku, Japan.
These days she teaches Jikiden Reiki, makes websites and writes books. She’s sometimes quite busy. Some of the things she loves are trees, art, being with friends, making up stories for her nephews, karaoke, cats and dark chocolate, not necessarily in that order. She lives in a quiet corner of Kent in the UK and tries, but usually fails, to stay there for long periods of time.

Buy Close Encounters of the Traveling Kind by Amanda Jayne

This giveaway is for one print copy or ebook copy of the book.  Print is available to the U.S. only but ebook is available worldwide. This giveaway ends on November 30, 2018 at midnight pacific time.  Entries are accepted via Rafflecopter only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

1 comment:

  1. It’s really great information for becoming a better Blogger. Keep sharing, Thanks



Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...