THIS MAN TRAVELED TO EVERY COUNTRY IN THE WORLD BEFORE HE WAS 40
(P1) By the time he was 37 years old, Gunnar Garfors had already traveled to every single country in the world.
(P2) His love for travel started at a young age.
(P3) Garfors’ father was a doctor on a cruise ship that sailed around the Pacific Ocean.
(P4) At the time, he was just 3 years old — too young to read — so his father would send cassette tapes to him and his brother in their home in Norway in which he recorded amazing stories from the places he visited.
(P5) This was before the time when social media made it easy to connect across the globe in an instant.
(P7) “Every day we ran down to the mailbox to see if there was a tape from our dad,” Garfors said. “And every once or twice a month there was a tape. I just remember this AWE, and thinking, wow this is incredible. It really made a big impact on me and it certainly BOOSTED my curiosity about the world.”
(P8) The tales his father told from his journeys around the world — to Alaska, Canada, China, and the Philippines, to name a few — inspired Garfors to book a trip to China with his brother, the first trip he took to another continent.
(P9) “China is something totally different: its lack of INFRASTRUCTURE, a totally different culture, new food, and all the rest of it,” Garfors said. “It really opened my eyes.”
(P10) That’s when his ADDICTION to travel really began. A few years later he booked a trip to Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan in central Asia and “totally fell in love with those countries.”
(P11) He decided that he wanted to visit all the -stan countries — there are seven of them — and after accomplishing that feat, he was HOOKED.
(P12) Before he knew it, Garfors had visited a total of 85 countries. That was when he just decided to TAKE THE PLUNGE and visit all 198. It took him another five years to complete his goal.
If you found the passage difficult to read or had problems understanding specific words or idiomatic expressions, please discuss them with your tutor. The following discussion questions should be answered in your own words and with your own arguments.
- Briefly summarize the content of the article in your own words.
- Would you be interested in doing what this man did, or is just too much travel?
- What country are you most interested in visiting?
- Did your parents and grandparents tell you many stories when you were growing up?
- What experiences in your childhood were FORMATIVE for you?
EXPRESSIONS TO PRACTICE:
What do the following expressions mean? Practice using each expression in a sentence; extra points if you can use it in conversation.
- Take the plunge