The name [Cape Fear] is as misplaced as my own fears. I see now that I’ve always been afraid of the wrong things. My great shame is not my fear of death, but my fear of life.
9 out of 52: The Kindness of Strangers
There are very few times in my life where I have thought “gee I wish I was a man”, probably never. But after reading this book I did think it for a fleeting moment. Mike McIntyre is a journalist who leaves his job and travels from California to North Carolina without a penny, depending on the kindness of strangers for rides, food and shelter. As a woman I would be afraid to hitchike by myself out in these isolated towns. Somehow being surrounded by people on the streets of Manhattan feels safer. Yet I envy him for this amazing adventure he went on. But even his grandmother tells him “you’ll get raped” and throughout he is shocked by the single women on the road who do pick him up – the college girl who he admitted to lusting after to the the little old lady who had a bad incident with a hitchhiker.
Along the way he met pastors, drug dealers, shady characters and grannies. He found that kindness often came from the people who had the least to give. Each person had a story to tell and Mike told the story well. He was honest about his fears and his judgments of the people that he met along the way. The journey focuses more on the people, the kindness they offered and how it effected him rather offering much about the places he stopped at.