Page 31. " She signed up with an organization called Voluntary Services Overseas "

Voluntary Service Overseas (VSO) is an international development charity that places experienced volunteers alongside local partners to live and work as equals. Since 1958, VSO has placed over 42,000 volunteers in more than 140 developing countries in Africa, Asia, the Pacific, the Caribbean, Eastern Europe and Latin America.


Page 32. " He was a Peace Corps volunteer "

In 1961, President John F. Kennedy established the Peace Corps to promote world peace and friendship. Nearly 200 000 volunteers and trainees have taken part in 139 countries.


Page 32. " among baobab and papaya trees "
Baobab tree
Creative Commons Attribution Share AlikeBaobab tree - Credit: Bgag

Baobabs are trees of the Adansonia genus, native to Madagascar, mainland Africa and Australia. Their distinctive swollen trunks store water, an adaptation that helps them survive drought conditions.

Papaya is native to the tropics of America, but is cultivated in most tropical countries.

Papaya tree
GNU Free Documentation LicensePapaya tree - Credit: Bmdavll


Page 33. " He spoke Jola "


Casamance, Senegal
Creative Commons AttributionCasamance, Senegal - Credit: Olivier Epron

The Jola are an ethnic group found in Senegal, Gambia, and Guinea-Bissau. They predominantly inhabit the region of Casamance in Senegal.


Learn some Jola

Page 33. " Nixon took state after state "

In 1969, Richard Nixon was inaugurated the 37th US President. When he took office, 300 American soldiers were dying per week in Vietnam. Nixon stepped up the intensity of the war, approving a secret bombing campaign of North Vietnamese positions in Cambodia to destroy what was believed to be the headquarters of the National Front for the Liberation of Vietnam.

Despite Robert's pessimism, Nixon made good on a campaign pledge to reduce troop numbers, bringing home 25,000 soldiers in 1969.  He also pursued a policy of replacing American troops with Vietnamese.

Nixon won a second term in office, but resigned in 1974 following the Watergate scandal.  He died in 1994.

Page 33. " Here people spoke another language called Wolof "

Wolof Woman
Public DomainWolof Woman - Credit: Maurice Delafosse
Wolof is the most widely language spoken in Senegal and is also spoken in The Gambia, and Mauritania. It is the native language of the Wolof people. Unlike most other languages of Sub-Saharan Africa, it is not a tonal language.

Banana is a Wolof word, and the English word yam is believed to be derived from Wolof/Fula nyami, "to eat food." 

How do you do?   Na nga def ?/ Naka nga def ? / Noo def?

I am fine                Maa ngi fii rekk 

Thank you             Jërëjëf

Yes                          Waaw

No                           Déedéet 

Page 34. " She flew home the night a man walked on the moon "
Apollo 11 first step
Public DomainApollo 11 first step - Credit: Li Sung

On 20 July 1969, Apollo 11 landed on the moon, making astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin the first men ever to set foot there. Armstrong called it "a giant leap for mankind".  The event was watched by millions of people around the world.


Page 34. " bluffing her way into a job on Rolling Stone "

Rolling Stone is a US magazine devoted to music, politics, and popular culture. It was founded in San Francisco in 1967 by Jann Wenner (who is still editor and publisher) and music critic Ralph J. Gleason. It was named after the 1948 Muddy Waters song of the same name and is read by 13 million young adults.

Listen on Spotify: Rolling Stone - Muddy Waters


Page 35. " it was L.L. Bean meets the Sex Pistols "

L.L. Bean is a clothing company famous for its preppy style.

The Sex Pistols was a highly influential English punk rock band formed in 1975. They produced only four singles and one studio album, breaking up just three years later after a  turbulent US tour. 

Listen on Spotify: God Save the Queen - Sex Pistols

Page 39. " flashy new Morgan "


Creative Commons AttributionMorgan - Credit: Mike Baird

The Morgan was one of the earliest horse breeds developed in the United States. It has a compact, muscular build, clean-cut head and a well-arched neck.


Page 40. " a sleek Winchester .308 with a telescopic sight "
Winchester .308 Cartridge
Public DomainWinchester .308 Cartridge - Credit: Boris Barowski

The .308 cartridge is widely used by hunters worldwide.

The rifle is probably a Winchester Model 70, a highly popular model amongst American sport hunters.  Shooting Times magazine named the Model 70 the "Bolt-action Rifle of the Century".


Winchester Model 70
Creative Commons Attribution Share AlikeWinchester Model 70 - Credit: Meniscus, Wikimedia


Page 47. " 'You mean shoot him?' "

Although horses were traditionally shot when badly injured, it is becoming more common for vets to inject a barbiturate overdose. However, in some situations it can be dangerous to attempt an injection. If the horse is in shock, its circulation may be too impaired to transport the drug to the brain and heart, and the veins may be difficult to locate. The veterinarian may need to use a .22-caliber pistol to euthanize the animal. If the gun is properly positioned, death should be instantaneous.