Thursday, September 29, 2011

An Excellent Adventure

Once in a while I hit a book that is so much fun that I plow through it in one or two sittings.  Such is Harry Truman's Excellent Adventure, by Matthew Algeo.

When Harry Truman left office in 1953, there was no retirement package for ex-presidents.  You just stopped being president - no income, no secret service detail, nada.  Truman's income was minimal, just a small pension from his WWI service, but the expenses for a former president were large - office, correspondence, etc.  And he and his wife wanted to go to D.C. and New York.  How to do it on a small budget?  Why, drive yourself, of course.  Take a road trip to save money, stay in motels and with friends, eat in diners.  So on June 19, 1953, he and Bess loaded up the Chrysler and headed out of their driveway in Independence, MO,  eastward bound.  What followed probably wasn't quite what they expected.  And, as narrated by Algeo, very entertaining.

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