Review by Katie Daniels
When have the best laid plans ever gone right? Mark Stevens shares with us how gloriously bad even the most thought out bucket list trip can go, yet still accidentally turn into an irreplaceable adventure.
We join Mark and his partner Selly as they begin their adventure of a lifetime – riding a motorcycle up the Pan-American Highway (PAH). After years of dreaming, planning, saving, practicing, re-saving, and re-planning, they’re finally off: in November 2019. If you happen to remember the beginning months of 2020, you may be able to guess their massive plot twist. Some of us may be trying to block 2020 from our memories, but thankfully, Mark and Selly chose to share theirs with us.
We all have unique experiences and memories from 2020. I quite enjoyed reading about the lively survivor squad hanging out in the volcanic paradise tucked away in Nicaragua, especially since it has a happy ending for a pup. I’m ready for my own BBQ complete with coke, rum, and a bit of paddle boarding! Book my stay at Paradiso!
I thoroughly enjoyed reading of the beautiful countries, wildlife, and people they encountered prior to the worldwide lockdown. It painted vivid illustrations of the very real-world context to go with famous photos we’ve all seen of Easter Island, Machu Picchu, and Argentinian steaks.
Mark’s first-person style writing connects us with the individual life stories while gently reminding us of our humanitarian responsibilities for lives off the tourist trails. It’s an important call to action so we can meet the needs of those around us. Sometimes we merely need to ponder the possibilities and utilize our current resources. It can make a life-changing difference for another. Amidst the chaos of the headlines, there is still kindness in the world.
One particular quote resonated with me. It’s a reflection of my personal traveling motto, passed on through my family: “There just isn’t a perfect time for lengthier adventures. You can try to pick a window, plan and re-plan, but you never know what’s around the corner. Reasons pop up why ‘this isn’t the best year’, but they’ll pop up every year and ultimately you just have to go as soon as you can make it happen. If you dilly-dally over it for too long, it really will become that long-lost dream.”
It Was A Good Plan had me giggling, pondering, and googling potential itineraries, just not with a bike. It’s an entertaining read for any young adult and older who shares the travel bug, epic motorcycle rides, or interest in other cultures. I put the book down feeling like I had just had a beer with good friends. Cheers to the memories!
Katie Daniels is a speech language pathologist in Florida, where she resides with her husband and their pup-child. She has dabbled in professional and personal writing over the years, but only recently began sharing her work with others. She is a proud Florida kid who enjoys meeting new people, seeing new places, and all things related to laughter, travel, faith, Disney, reading, and F.S.U. football. She is easily bribed with donuts or mac ‘n cheese.
She would love to connect on Instagram.