This is an account of the author's journey (accompanied by his long-suffering but also adventurous wife) down the Ganges in 1963, in a series of small boats. Newby's a humorist, and one of his favorite tropes is likening something he sees to a pedestrian English sight like a hesitant bather on a pier, or "a party of revelers pausing to wonder where to go next", or whatever. That's effectively funny. I didn't expect much deep insight from this account of travelers passing by people and societies they could barely communicate with, and indeed it's more amusing than anything, but I was interested in Newby's recollections of being posted there with the British Army just before independence. Plus, he sometimes finds a lot of beauty in the river.