About this item
In the mid-1940s, Sybille Bedford set off from Grand Central Station for Mexico, accompanied by her friend E., a hamper of food and drink (Virginia ham, cherries, watercress, a flute of bread, Portuguese rosé), books, a writing board, and paper. Her resulting travelogue captures the rich and violent beauty of the country as it was then. Bedford doesn’t so much describe Mexico as take the reader there by hand, like a small child, in second-class motor buses over thousands of miles, through arid noons and frigid nights, successions ofcomida corrida, botched excursions to the coast, conversations recorded verbatim, hilarious observations, and fascinating digressions into murky histories. At the heart of the book is the Don Otavio of the title, the travelers’ gracious host, a man of lived rather than recorded history. His hacienda at Lake Chapala is the still, Edenic center of the book, and his garrulous family and friends, what Mexico meant in terms of human experience for S. and E. Published in 1953,A Visit to Don Otavio was an immediate success, “a travel book written by a novelist,” as Bedford described it, establishing her reputation as a nonpareil writer.
Number of Pages: 368
Genre: Biography + Autobiography, Travel
Sub-Genre: Mexico, Travel
Series Title: New York Review Books Classics
Publisher: Random House Inc
Author: Sybille Bedford
Street Date: June 21, 2016
Item Number (DPCI): 248-19-8678
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