Ever wondered what it would be like to give in to your mid-life crisis, stick two fingers up to the world and start a fresh life? Well, Peter “Pitschi” Greulich does just that: shortly before he and his girlfriend and their other coupled friends are to depart for the umpteenth time for a holiday on Mallorca, he has a rash change of heart and perfidiously jets off instead to Buenos Aires armed with little more than the clothes on his back and his broken words of holiday Spanish.
There are plenty of laughs to be had in his ensuing adventures in the southern hemisphere, as Pitschi discovers that starting life afresh isn’t as easy as he’d imagined. Whilst the book is certainly more likely to appeal to men, as our anti-hero offs in pursuit of every man’s dream of unfettered freedom, chasing tail and drinking beer, no doubt women will also appreciate the way Jaud deals with man’s neuroses and lampoons his childishness. All of which is to say nothing of the nicely weaved events of this tragicomedy which build to a fine crescendo as Pitschi has to decide between his new world and the life he left behind. Despite its brevity, there are plenty of laughs to be had in this book’s 250 pages.
Just a word to non-German readers, this is a relatively easy book for an advanced German learner to read, aside from the fact that Tommy Jaud has many of his characters ‘speak’ Fränkisch. Anyone used to the idiosyncrasies of south German dialects shouldn’t have any problems, but learners unused to seeing anything beyond ‘High German’ might be made a little ‘stutzig’ by some of the conversations.