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Distant Archipelagos: Memories of Malaya by…

Distant Archipelagos: Memories of Malaya

by Peter Moss

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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0595325564, Paperback)

He dropped money bags from low-flying biplanes on remote rubber plantations and tin mines, spent nights in deep jungle longhouses, aboard fishing kelongs manned by aboriginals far out at sea, in mosquito-infested swamps collecting malarial parasites and on beaches where giant leatherback turtles came to lay their eggs. He accompanied commonwealth troops hunting for terrorists on the Thai-Malaysian border, flew reconnaissance patrols seeking guerilla camps and escorted Field Marshal Templer on his return visit to the country he had liberated from communist insurrection.

He met Lady Edwina Mountbatten, wife of the architect of India's independence, interviewed actors Orson Welles and Sir Donald Wolfit, and was conversing with the French Ambassador when a ghost walked into the room. He worked with William Holden, Susannah York and Capucine on a film in which nearly everyone ended up miscast. He helped conceal an escaped prisoner in a hilarious fake jail-break, trailed the Sultan of Pahang on a regal progress through Malaysia's largest state and befriended one of President Soekarno's infamous red beret parachutists, sent on a sabotage mission during the height of Indonesian confrontation.

Mostly he loved the land and its people, so much that he shunned the cocktail circuit and the city life for the simple pleasures of the kampong and the open road, learning the language and feeling his way towards what French author Henry Fauconnier had called "the Soul of Malaya". With Distant Archipelagos, Peter Moss follows up his account of an Anglo-Indian childhood, in Bye-Bye Blackbird, by painting a vivid portrait of another vanished world.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:11:08 -0400)

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