Published: May 8, 2014
Burnham adventurer completes 600 mile hitch-hike across Paraguay

Burnham-On-Sea adventurer Michael Turner has returned home from a 600 mile hitch-hiking journey across Paraguay in South America.

Michael, 58, has spent much of his life writing about his travels and following in the footsteps of the British explorer Sir Francis Drake.

Michael has just returned from his latest travels across remote areas of Paraguay.

As always, the supply teacher always travels with an educational purpose and this time he says he was inspired by the film The Mission.

"I extensively photographed one of the ten wonders of the natural world, the Iguazú waterfalls. I also visited the best preserved ruins of the 18th century, the Jesuits missions," he said.

"By coincidence when I was carrying my rucksack along a busy street clutching a Bradt guidebook to Paraguay, I came across the author and asked her to sign the book."

"Next day, I interviewed her in her adopted village where she oversees her charity that promotes free tertiary education for bright, poor students. I offered revised information and photographs for the pending reprint."

"I also learnt that the late Demetrio Ortiz, composer of the most famous Paraguayan song, Recuerdos de Ypacarí was not buried where the guidebook stated."

Michael tracked down the composer's daughter, María Esperanza Ortiz Maidana, who invited him to visit her house where she showed him her museum dedicated to her late father.

"As a token of my appreciation, I agreed to supply the museum with a copy of an interview I recorded in New York with Neil Sedaka which was gratefully received."

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