Remembering the Journey
'On the Road' by Jack Kerouac

On wondertrunk & co.’s official Facebook page, we’re sharing our staff’s picks for movies, books, and songs that have inspired us to get out there and explore the world. As international travel remains on hold for the time being, now is the perfect time to reminisce and revisit some of our favorite moments from previous travels!
Today, one of our staff members based in Los Angeles and Japan right now, will share a favorite book.

The book that Inspire Us: ‘On the Road’

Hello! I’m Marie from wondertrunk & co. The book I’d like to introduce is ‘On the Road’.
‘On The Road’ is set in the aftermath of the Second World War and tells the story of Sal Paradise’s travels across America with his wild and reckless friend Dean Moriarty.

Based on Kerouac’s own life, the book depicts bus rides and adventurous hitchhiking escapades against a backdrop of jazz, alcohol, and careless freedom. Like many people, I read ‘On The Road’ in my late teenage years when I was still trying to figure out what kind of person I wanted to be and what kind of life I wanted live.

The book’s unapologetic depiction of travel as a lifestyle rather than just something you do on holiday one per year gave me the courage to move overseas and choose an unconventional life. It taught me to love the open road and that feeling of unbounded freedom you get when you are on the way to somewhere new with no idea of what lies ahead. It was a big part of my inspiration for moving to China and later Japan!

I think part of the power of Kerouac is in how quotable he is. Every other page of On The Road features a line you want to save and go back to again and again. For me, whenever I set out on a trip or a new adventure, I think back to this quote: “Nothing behind me, everything ahead of me, as is ever so on the road.”

And don’t forget to be a little wild sometimes, or as Kerouac puts it “mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time,” and remember – the road is life.

On the Road by Jack Kerouac, 1957