Riding with Strangers: A Hitchhiker's Journey

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Chicago Review Press, 2006 - Social Science - 240 pages
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This fascinating tale of the author's cross-country hitchhiking journey is a captivating look into the pleasures and challenges of the open road. As the miles roll by he meets businessmen, missionaries, conspiracy theorists, and truck drivers from all ages and ethnicities who are eager to open their car doors to a wandering stranger. This memoir uncovers the hidden reality that the United States remains hospitable, quirky, and as ready as ever to offer help to a curious traveler. Demonstrating how hitchhiking can be the ultimate in adventure travel--a thrilling exploration of both people and scenery--this guide also serves as a hitchhiker's reference, sharing the history behind this communal form of travel while touching on roadside lore and philosophy.
 

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Contents

Service Plaza
12
Cop
16
Laws of the Highway
19
Dangers
23
Chicago Independent
30
Missionary
34
Gods of the Highway
41
ChineseCanadian Tourists
46
Midtown Crossroads
107
Of Grain Elevators and Skydiving
110
The Easy Life
113
Of Toll Bridges and Torts
118
Of Air Conditioners and Conspiracy
122
A Historical Investigation
126
The Art and Science of Hitchhiking
142
A Vehicular Taxonomy orNatural History of the Highway
158

Mexican Driver
50
Night
54
Truck Stop
59
Malaise
64
Rounding St Louis
67
Weirdo
71
Regional Manager
73
The Literary Life
78
Hannibal
83
Hopping Freights
87
Townspeople
96
Sleeping Rough
100
The Tramps Alarm Clock
104
A Fellow Musician
171
A Ride Across the Plains
176
Another Night on the Road
187
Red Desert and Little America
191
Russian
195
The Melting Pot
201
The Whiteness of the Drivers
205
Corvette
209
Russian Redux
212
Dark Streets
218
And the Gods Laughed
225
Mexico 1987
228
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About the author (2006)

Elijah Wald es escritor y musico con veinte anos de experiencia reportando sobre los origenes musicales y sobre la musica misma en diferentes regiones del mundo. Fue escritor y asesor para el proyecto de multiples medios del Instituto Smithsonian llamado The Mississippi: River and Song (El Rio Mississippi: el rio y su musica), y tambien recibio un premio por la biografia Josh White: Society Blues (Josh White, Blues de la Sociedad). Una sobrevista de su obra se puede conseguir en elijawald.com.

Elijah Wald is a writer and musician with twenty years experience covering roots and world music. He was writer and consultant on the Smithsonian multimedia project The Mississippi: River of Song, and is the author of the award-winning biography Josh White: Society Blues.

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