Dad of Divas' Reviews: Book Review - A Lifetime of Small Adventures

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Book Review - A Lifetime of Small Adventures

About the Book
If there’s a bit of the adventurer in you, you’ll love reading this book.
  • You’ll laugh when you read about 14-year old Billy flooding the basement of his home — quite by accident, he claims.
  • You’ll laugh again when you read of his experimenting with rockets and explosives, and doing — quite innocently he insists — just a little bit of damage.
  • You’ll hold your breath when you read of the plane’s single engine quitting at an altitude of 2,500 feet.  Nope, he wasn’t killed.
  • You’ll hold your breath again, and again, when you read of his exploits both hitchhiking and picking up hitchhikers.  Fortunately, only a few of his passengers were seriously dangerous.
  • You’ll move to the edge of your chair while reading of his being caught by the current while swimming across the Colorado River — while hearing the downstream rapids growing louder and louder.
  • You’ll pause to reflect when you read of his thoughts about how we creatures of modern society are too damn busy.  And too materialistic.  And you’ll nod in agreement with his theory about “the three ages of man.”  And how every person needs to maintain their dignity.
  • You’ll either admire him or think he’s nuts when your read that, at age 64, he applied to join the Peace Corps.  And when the Peace Corps’ medical department turned him down he and his wife sold their home, put everything they owned in storage and flew down to Peru in search of their own volunteer opportunities.  They moved to and worked voluntarily in a poor community in the Peruvian Andes.
Bill Birnbaum writes in his humorous, reader-friendly style.  So you can relax and enjoy reading of his lifetime of small adventures.

About the Author

Born and raised in New York, Bill Birnbaum spent his middle years in Southern California. There, he led climbing trips for the Sierra Club in California's Sierra Nevada Mountains. He raised two sons and enjoyed a twenty-five-year career as a self-employed management consultant. For twenty years, Bill published and edited the Business Strategies Newsletter. He authored two business books, including, "Strategic Thinking: A Four Piece Puzzle." Published in 2004, that book is currently in its third printing.
In 2007, Bill and his wife, Wendy, were ready to write a new chapter in their lives. They sold their home, put everything they owned in storage and purchased two one-way tickets to Arequipa, Peru. They spent the next eight months living in Peru, six of those months working voluntarily in a poor community in the Peruvian Andes. Following their volunteer work in Peru, the Birnbaums spent an additional four months traveling in Ecuador, Patagonia Chile and Argentina.

Bill holds both a Bachelor's Degree in Electrical Engineering from The City College of New York, School of Engineering and a Master's Degree in Business Administration from California State University - Fullerton.

When asked to describe his memoir, "A Lifetime of Small Adventures," Bill simply refers to the subtitle, "Stories of adventure, misadventure, and lessons learned along the way."

Bill lives in Sisters, Oregon with his adventurous wife, Wendy, a red kayak and a well-worn pair of hiking boots.

My Take on the Book
This is the type of story that you simply sit back and enjoy. The author is one that can weave a tale and allow you to feel the emotions that are supposed to be felt, laughing at times and feeling amazed in others. During many times in the story I found myself doing just this, but in all I have to say that it was like I had Bill Birbaum in the room with me talking to me and drawing me closer and closer to the adventures that he has had throughout his life. Not all of the adventures were humorous, but many were. In the former ones, I would say that this story makes you think deeply about the journey and the issues that were being shared also. 

I found myself thinking back to my own childhood and the adventures that I had with them! I also started thinking about my own kids and how tight of a rope that sometimes I feel that we have them on in contrast to what I had growing up.

The book also reminds me to live each day to the fullest and that you only have one life to live so you need to make the most of it! 

A great, inspiring book that will engage you from beginning to end! My thanks to the author for sharing his story!

All opinions expressed in this review are my own and not influenced in any way by the company.  Any product claim, statistic, quote or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer or provider. Please refer to this site's Disclaimer  for more information. I have been compensated or given a product free of charge, but that does not impact my views or opinions.
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