Monday, October 20, 2008

Tourists

Some people are tourists and others aren't. I don't mean tourist as a
traveler necessarily, but as someone who wants to go to different
places or situations or states of mind but always return, only
minirly changednb They may even experience a certain degree of
discomfort through cheap hotels and moments of anxiety and
desperation,, physical deprivation and the risk or reality of disease
while always kniwing that it will end. They like to imagine bring poor
or in prison, sometimes through books or television. Through drugs,
they taste madness, but retreat at the edge of the abyss.

Others are not tourists: they travel and never return. They will
become someone else: living in the bush without ever planning to leave.

Wearing someone else's skin is being not a tourist. Working in a
country can be not being a tourist. Marrying a foreigner is not being
a tourist. Volunteering at a soup kitchen or building houses for the
poor is being a tourist.

I don't mean this as a judgement. Being a tourist is not bad and being
a non-tourist is not always good. Tourists can expand their everyday
lives and be more valuable because of it. Non tourists can be self and
other destructive. Working in a soup kitchen helps people. Leaving
your family to live in the jungle hurts others. It's just that there
is a chasm between knowing you will go home and knowing that this
situation is yours and it is you, forever.


\t : iPhone->you

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