People who travel in India and return always sound amazed in retrospect at what they survived. In Golden Goa (ECW Press), Grant Buday makes the trip three times, cranky at what he has to endure on buses and trains—one of which is wrecked—but impressed by his own staying power. Nevertheless, he has a great time and tells some fascinating stories. Along with his own adventures, he follows the story of Luis de Camoens, a Portuguese exile who wrote an epic poem titled "The Lusiads." Buday seems to derive some comfort from the fact that no matter how rough his adventures, Camoens had it worse. Camoens survived being exiled from Portugal to Goa, India, after losing his sweetheart and insulting the king in his poems. It took him six months to get from Portugal to Goa; along the way he was shipwrecked, and when he arrived he was promptly thrown in jail. Now that's a bad trip. Buday tempers his tendency to melancholy and crabbiness with a great sense of humour and irony. He reminds me of Paul Theroux, who complains about every mile of every journey but can't seem to stop travelling. Buday at least enjoys himself, even while his own stinginess ensures that he has to sleep in lousy hotels. This a funny, vivid travel book, a great addition to the canon of Canadian travel books.