“Dribbling” Through England! Bill Bryson’s Hilarious Journey Across His Adopted Homeland!

Time To Head To “Little Dribbling!”

The great Travel Writer Bill Bryson hits the road to tell the hilariously affectionate story of his new “homeland”, Great Britain…a sequel to his previous best-selling trip, “Notes From A Small Island” and in true Bryson style, he has many wild adventures!

This great travel memoir finds the “A Walk In The Woods” Author exploring England in his own unique way, just as he gets his citizenship confirmed by the country. He was born and raised in Iowa, but has lived in England for decades, and his love of the country permeates every adventure he recounts on his travels…

Bryson decides to create “The Bryson Line”, which is the furthest south to north you can travel in England, then proceeds to wildly jump all around as he explores what makes his new country so wonderful to him…

Among the entertaining things I learned from reading this journey:

Mount Everest Is Named After A Guy Who Was Never There!

That’s right, the guy whose name is attached to the world’s largest mountain never got within 200 miles of it!

Bryson explains how this British Bureaucrat, assigned to map part of India – but he never saw Mount Everest at all, and no one really knows how it came to be named after him!

The story get even stranger:

Early on in Bryson’s journey, he discovers that George Everest’s grave is nearby, so he goes off to seek it, with hilarious results. And on the way, he shares some amazing facts about the man and the mountain!

“George Everest, incidentally, didn’t pronounce his name Ev-er-rest, as everyone says it today, but as Eve-rest – just two syllables – so that the mountain is not only misnamed but mispronounced. Everest died aged seventy-six in Hyde Park Gardens, London, but was carted off to Hove for burial. No one knows why. He had no known connection to the town or to any part of Sussex. I was greatly taken with the idea of the most famous mountain in the world being named for a man who had no connection to it and whose name we don’t even pronounce correctly. I think that’s rather splendid.”

So of course, as Bryson searches for Everest’s grave, he happens upon a group of “toughs”, two of whom are arguing loudly while another one urinates against a wall. Not a good way to explore the graveyard….here’s what happened as Bryson is noticed by the “urinator”:

“He took a simultaneous interest in me, and shouted questions at me over his shoulder in a vaguely hostile manner, asking me what I was looking for.

I told him I was looking for the grave of a man named George Everest. He astounded me by saying, in quite a cultivated voice, ‘oh, just over there’, and nodded at some gravestones a few feet from me. ‘They named Mount Everest after him, but he never actually saw it, you know.

‘So I’ve read.’

‘Stupid fucker’, he said, a touch ambiguous, and hefted his organ back into his pants with an air of satisfaction.”

How can you not love this book?

The book is filled with great stories, trivia and insight into what makes England such a great country – and Bryson always writes with humor and warmth, making fun of himself more than anyone else…

The Actor Richard E. Grant loves the book as well, because it tells stories about a great country with humor, insight and affection.

I have read many of Bryson books, like this one, where he takes you to the most dangerous country in the world:

He’s a master of travel writing, one of the best – here is a look at his trip to Australia, as well as some other great nonfiction travel writing:


Thanks to Bill Bryson, I’ll never look at Mount Everest the same way again!

Categories: Books / Media, Exotic Travel, London, Memoirs, Talent/Celebrities, Travel, Travel Adventures, Travel Memoir, Uncategorized, Wacky Food

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

5 replies

  1. Clearly a must-read! I had no idea he’d brought out a sequel.

    • I have been on a travel memoir binge lately, and while Bryson can let his “punniness” get in the way at times, he also shares fascinating historical information…wait until you read about Mt. Everest – yes, it’s in the book – for a terrific reason!

  2. I love Bryson’s affection for the strange little details of life in England.
    Not far from where I live are two villages named Great Snoring and Little Snoring. We have some funny place name here. 🙂
    Best wishes, Pete.


  1. Three Travel Books That Inspire “Wanderlust!” Planes! Trains And Automobiles To The Far Corners Of The World! – johnrieber

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Drew's Movie Reviews

Movie reviews from your average dude

Carrot Ranch Literary Community

Wrangling literary arts for writers: words for people!

The Annual Bloggers Bash

The Official Website for the Best Blogging Event of the Year!

But I Smile Anyway...

Musings and memories, words and wisdom... of a working family woman

Colline's Blog

A potpourri of thoughts and experiences


Lifestyle | Sustainability | Travel

Travel with Intent

A photographer's view of the world - words and images to inspire your travels and your dreams

Movie Reviews 101

Daily Movie Reviews & ABC Film Challenge

Cindy Bruchman

Films. Travel. Photography. Books. Let's talk.

lazy day project

slow down or you’ll miss the best part

From Michigan to Germany

A family from Michigan living abroad in Germany.

Singular Sarah

Humor, Attempted. Clumsiness, Guaranteed.


The world's wildest movies from an era of "everything goes!"

A Little Life Rounded

A blog about making and being inspired by theatre

Eclectic Alli

A bit of this, a bit of that, the meandering thoughts of a dreamer.


Little Things Make Us Happy

Rust Belt Girl

reading and writing the Rust Belt

Cult Of The Cinema

Exploring Cinematic Diversity

Retired? No one told me!

Tonight I Dream. Tomorrow I Do!


The musings of a Londoner, now living in Norfolk


Beauty, Lifestyle, and Travel

Suzie Speaks

The Adventures Of a Thirty-Something Life

The Phil Factor

Where Sarcasm Gets Drunk and Let's Its Hair Down

Cats and Trails and Garden Tales

Musings on cats, travel, gardens and life

The BookWorm Drinketh

Give Tea to the Tillerman, But Booze to the Bookworm!

Tranquil Dreams

Watching, Reading, Cooking & Travelling

Esme Salon

Share, Care & Inspire

An Historian About Town

History in the Making

Live, Love & Voyage

Living How I Know Best

First Night History

How can we improve our future if we don't understand the past?

Susie Lindau's Wild Ride

Come for Adventure. Stay for the Ride!

Gin & Lemonade

...with a twist

Robbie's inspiration

Ideas on writing and baking

a mindful traveler

explore, live, love...

Half Baked In Paradise

Searching, settling, sauteeing and spritzing

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

Blog magazine for lovers of health, food, books, music, humour and life in general

It Rains... You Get Wet

Still more lazy thoughts from this one...

By Hook Or By Book

Book Reviews, News, and Other Stuff


Flaming Goats Heads of Terror

Admit One Film Addict

Psychotronic Cinema

Let's Go To The Movies

Film and Theatre Lover!

Susartandfood's Blog

A taste of humor about life, art and food

emmakwall (explains it all)

Film & soundtrack reviews, good humour and lists

You hear that?!?

An electronic record of learning of things

Tangled Up In Music

Music Reviews (and other things)

The Immortal Jukebox

A Blog about Music and Popular Culture

%d bloggers like this: