October 24, 2007

Brainy Thought - absurdity of tourism

“What an odd thing tourism is. You fly off to a strange land, eagerly abandoning all the comforts of home, and then expend vast quantities of time and money in a largely futile attempt to recapture the comforts that you wouldn’t have lost if you hadn’t left home in the first place.”

Bill Bryson, OBE (1951 - ) is a best-selling American-born author of humorous books on travel, as well as books on the English language and on scientific subjects (A Short History of Nearly Everything). He has lived for most of his adult life in England.

From the webpage BRAINY THOUGHT.COM

Isn't this just about exactly right. When I was young especially I wanted to travel and see different parts of the world, and I did see some courtesy of the U.S. military. But then that curious passage of life occurred, I became older and older until now I am maybe considered old. It's not that I have died intellectually. I still would like to go to Paris and sit at a cafe and watch the Seine flow by and try to picture the postcard Paris, the Paris of Hemingway, Fitzgerald, or where the dreaded Nazi's marched under the Arc De Triumph while the Parisians watched and cried, but I no longer like being away from my home and its familiarity and comforts.

Being older also brings an understanding of what is is and what is past is past, and my days of traveling far distances are behind me for good or for bad. But I still have eyes and imagination and books and other media which will have to do.

I have the book SUITE FRANCAISE sitting on my pile of books to be read and that will take me to Paris in the bad times, and a MAYLE book of life in Provence in the good times without having to eat bad food in restaurants or accumulating dirty laundry in my suitcase. Cest LaVie, I hope that means such is life.

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