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Half-Safe

31 May 2013 10:29 pm0 commentsViews: 20

Can you imagine setting off on an attempt to circumnavigate the globe using a single vehicle, a WWII surplus amphibious Jeep, for both land AND sea crossings?

Probably not because it borders on insane. But in 1951, that is exactly what Ben Carlin and his wife Eleanor did in their refitted Jeep dubbed Half-Safe. The craft certainly lived up to its name.

The account of their Atlantic crossing alone would have been more than enough to get 99.999% to have sworn the Half-Safe journey off for good. But after a 3 year fundraising delay, they resumed in 1954 and continued to face extraordinary odds.

This is definitely not the typical adventure story swelling with machismo. It’s a little dark and makes you reflect on the boundary between healthy and unhealthy obsession.

The story of the Carlins and Half-Safe is truly a remarkable, bizarre, and forgotten tale. Its told well by James Nestor in his 2012 release Half-Safe: A Story of Love, Obsession, and History’s Most Insane Around-the-world Adventure. I found a review of the book fitting when it said the story was “equal parts entertaining and uncomfortable.” If their story intrigues you, check it out because it’s a quick and cheap read about a wild adventure.

To find out about other great adventure books, click here.

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