Derek Mansfield’s NOTES FROM THE ROAD Volume IV were formed mainly inside a motorcycle helmet on a journey from London to Ukraine via the Balkans, twice.
Within the first thousand miles the petrol-soaked Google map dissolved and GPS failed increasingly. A thousand miles later road signs changed from Latin to Cyrillic and the skills for dead-reckoning, remembered from the author’s nautical past, turned out to be less than adequate.
No matter. The interior of a motorcyclist’s head is lit with flashing synapses long after the ignition is switched off. Thus the author, whose memory is on the brink of age-related failure, stopped regularly to make notes. Reviewing these later he realised they made little sense, but were not without humour and distilled here take the reader on an increasingly surreal journey of language, customs and culture.