The Glorious Adventure
by Halliburton, Richard
pub. by Bobbs Merril Co. Indianapolis, Indiana, USA, 1927       isbn none - - Maps. on end papers - - black and white photos - - 354 p. total
In this book Richard Halliburton wakes up one day and realizes there is not enough adventure in his life. He finds a friend to travel with him and goes to Greece to follow the route that Ulysses traveled in the Odyssey of Homer.
During this series of adventures Halliburton swims across the Hellespont. This is the body of water which separates Asiatic Turkey from the European part of the world. It is a rapidly moving wide stream which connects the Black Sea with the Mediterranean. The lake-ish Sea of Marma is in the middle of this waterway. The Hellespont is to be the part between the Mediterranean and the Sea of Marma.
First Halliburton travels to Greece and with his friend Roderick and a local shepard climb Mt. Olympus. They spent a miserable night while a storm passed.
He spendt the night in the Parthenon after sneaking in past guards after dark. During this added dialogue with one of the maiden statues. He sort-of ran the marathon over the original route. (What that had to do with Ulysses is beyond comprehension.)
Then Halliburton got down to the true business of following the trail of Ulysses. He followed the example of Lord Byron and swam the Hellespont. Then after crossing into modern Turkey arrived at Troy and ran 3 times around the mound which is the remanent of Troy following Alxander the Greats example. From there he went to N. Africa visisting Lotus land. Roderick had to go home and Richard met an Alpine ski instructor during his summer wanderings, who became his companion for the N. African venture and visit to the Island of Scicily, finding Cyclops cave and including climbing a very active Stromboli, the local volcano. The Ski instructor had to leave and for the next part in Italy he met up with a wealthy young woman who he called Jimmy (traveling in her Rolls Royce) who climed another volcano, Mt. Vesuvius. Then rowed past the island of Li galli where Ulysses encountered Sirens (and Richard did not) followed by a trip to Capri and a visit to the fameous grotto. Later he found that swimming between Messina (whirlpool Scylla - Charybdis) and the strait between the Italian coast and the island of Sicily was not worth it. He boated across and due to a misunderstanding with the boatmen spent a night in jail in Italy.
He, Jimmy, her friend Min and a guide climbed Mt. Aetna. It was winter and very cold. After that adventure Jimmy revealed that she had to leave to meet her husband (never before mentioned). Ulysses crew ate come of cattle owned by the Sun god and managed to lose the rest of his crew. Ulysses was delayed for some years by Calypso. Halliburton, in Valetta, on the island of Malta met Fifi, and older (65 yr old) actress who assisted his re-creating the Calypso part of Ulysses travel. She also followed along to Corfu after which her husband, George, summoned her to return to Italy.
Halliburton hurridly finishes his Odyssey ending, as it should in Ithica and retelling Ulysses reunion with Penelope.
This a rollicking tale by a young man who did his best, with distractions, to re-trace the Homeric story, the Odyssey. Despite what one might read into the last third of the adventure it was not rakes progress and all-in-all it did expose one to the story.
It is a fun read.

~ 2017-03-06 ~

Note on Richard Halliburton - He was born in 1900 and disappered and was presumed dead in 1939.
He graduated from Princeton University in 1921. He adventured and wrote about his adventures.
His last was an attempt to sail from China to San Francisco, California, USA aboard a poorly contructed Chinese Junk.
It went missing during a storm in 1939, in a part of the Pacific very roughly near where Amelia Erhart went missing.

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