Book Notes: Leo Buscaglia // The Way of the Bull
How I Chose The Book
I’ll admit, when it comes to travel, I’ve always been more drawn to places in South America or Europe. Asia was always at the bottom of my list. For whatever reason, I never saw myself planning a dream, two week trip to Thailand, Nepal or India, if I was to something like that, I was more drawn to Italy, Spain or anywhere on the Mediterranean.
Those feelings started to shift however when I listened to Ari Shaffir’s podcasts about his travels through Asia. I believe for 4-5 months, Ari dropped everything, changed all his passwords on his media accounts, and just took off on a backpackers dream trip through Eastern Asia. His passion and the way he talked about it started to compound with all the Anthony Bourdain shows I’ve watched and I began to open myself up to the joy others were having as they traveled in this area of the world.
So one day, I had a little extra time after a meeting and I decided to search the shelves of Downtown Books. I recognized the name ‘Leo Buscaglia’ from a few communication classes I took in college and investigated further. The book was about his travels through Asia and the lessons he took from the people he met along the way. It was a small book, 174 pages and it only costs $1.45 - I was in.
The Way of the Bull
I really enjoyed the pace of this book and the ease in which it read. It’s a shorter book, only 174 pages and it’s broken up into 12 chapters. Each one has a different focus based on the location of his travels. The countries and cities he visits are Japan, Hong Kong, Thailand, Cambodia, Saigon, Bali, Ceylon, Southern India, Calcutta, Kashmir, and finally Nepal.
The book read much like a travel journal, but you could also tell Buscaglia allowed himself the time to reminisce and meditate on the lessons he learned from the people and places he visited. There are very touching stories of people he met, who helped him and who he also helped.
Buscaglia quickly sets the table of the environment and culture he’s in and moves swiftly into a personal anecdote of a personal interaction he has with a member of the community. It’s very engaging and I found myself being able to imagine these places quite easily.
I would look forward to the next city and adventure as I moved through the book along with him. The lessons that Buscaglia wants you to take away from the book are subtle but easily revealed.
Although the book was published in 1973, I’m glad I didn’t pass over it. I would recommend it to anyone interested in Eastern Asia culture or is about to travel there. This book is a helpful way to allow our mind to expand and to follow along the journey with Buscaglia, as he takes us along his trip in this incredible part of the world.