Touching The World - Cathy Birchall & Bernard Smith (Panther Publishing)
A blind woman, 2 wheels, 25,000 miles
Touching The World - Cathy Birchall & Bernard Smith
Adventure and courage all the way… From feeling the traffic passing so close it touches you as you ride through Indian cities, to mounting an elephant from the front (yes, really!) in Nepal and climbing the mountain at Macchu Picchu in Peru with its innumerable steps and vertiginous drops, Touching the World takes you on a journey of extraordinary beauty and interest, full of surprises. It is unique in the perspective it takes, because Touching the World is written from Cathy’s point of view, that of a blind woman. Their old BMW motorcycle keeps breaking down and you feel for Bernard as the lights dim in Malaysia and the bike grinds to a halt with a dead battery. But somehow they keep the bike going. and in this they were often helped by the unwavering kindness of strangers. From border guards guiding Cathy’s hand to the bike to anchor her in a strange place, to Glen helping perform open heart surgery on the bike in the Nullarbor desert, the natural generosity of people is vividly portrayed.
What is it like to be blind? Touching The World challenges our perceptions of our own boundaries as well as those of others and portrays vividly just what it means to be blind in a way that has never before been attempted. Cathy and Bernard not only achieve their dream but also set a landmark for us all.