Friday, October 16, 2009

Toledo Reeks of Mysticism

In 1928, the European Tour was a rite of passage for upper class American college kids (much the same as for their 1960s and 1970s counterparts). For both generations, half the fun was bumming around Europe, ferreting out the cheapest deals on good food, places to stay and late night entertainment.

Enter The Hand-Me-Down-1928. Created at the end of the summer in 1927 "by several hundred students who pooled their European hotel findings and their pet discoveries that they might be passed on to future student travelers, to save their pocketbooks and enrich their trips."

"The result is the 1928 Hand-Me-Down, which you have just received in exchange for fifty cents...Amended Hand-Me-Downs will be handed down to students to come in 1929 and everafter.

"There are a number of blank pages at the back of the book for memorandums and instructions as to how to record your information. At the end of the summer those pages may be torn out and sent to..."

"Don't expect the book to be perfect - romance for Sally may not be romance for John; what pleases Peter may not please you. It goes without saying that the Hand-Me-Down is not public property. It is for STCA passengers only, and only 1500 of them."

And what sort of impressions did the 1928 student traveller leave?

"In Arles, France, the Treviot Restaurant....has a sawdust covered floor but serves delicious meals for 12-15 fr

"In Carcassonne, France, Notes: A very, very old lady who sits outside the walls near entrance will teach you how to weave fish nets

"In Paris, France, Chateau Madrid Restaurant: Dancing out of doors, tea is less catastrophic

"Winchester, Great Britain,Black Swan Hotel: Don't get a room on the road if you want to sleep

"Florence, Italy, Picchiole Hotel: excellent and cheap, but pigeons have a habit of flying right into your room

"Krak0w, Poland, De France Hotel: Cheap and delightful, chambermaids are barefooted

"Toledo, Spain, Notes: Unexcelled location on top of hill, accessible only by two very fine bridges. Don't fail to overlook lower city at night... Toledo reeks of mysticism."

Offered for sale, The Hand-Me-Down 1928, as of October 16, 2009, by Chewybooks.

2 comments:

starbaby said...

Love this one:

"Florence, Italy, Picchiole Hotel: excellent and cheap, but pigeons have a habit of flying right into your room

asterisk said...

delicious. but if you happen to have someone spill their drink down your blouse and you (total reflex!) call them b**ch, and they push you and you are so shocked you -- never having experienced physical force -- happen to slap them, do you get thrown out of the bar? or is that only in the midlands?

imagine the above young lady in a bar in italy and -- well, scary.

btw, alex won best musician. yea!