Tourist Quotes (displaying: 1 - 30 of 121 quotes )
Tourists came around and looked into our tipis. That those were the homes we choose to live in didn`t bother them at all. The untied the door, opened the flap, and barged right in, touching our things, poking through our bedrolls, inspecting everything. It boggles my mind that tourists feel they have the god-given right to intrude everywhere.
That day in Chartres they had passed through town and watched women kneeling at the edge of the water, pounding clothes against a flat, wooden board. Yves had watched them for a long time. They had wandered up and down the old crooked streets, in the hot sun; Eric remembered a lizard darting across a wall; and everywhere the cathedral pursued them. It is impossible to be in that town and not be in the shadow of those great towers; impossible to find oneself on those plains and not be troubled by that cruel and elegant, dogmatic and pagan presence. The town was full of tourists, with their cameras, their three-quarter coats, bright flowered dresses and shirts, their children, college insignia, Panama hats, sharp, nasal cries, and automobiles crawling like monstrous gleaming bugs over the laming, cobblestoned streets. Tourist buses, from Holland, from Denmark, from Germany, stood in the square before the cathedral. Tow-haired boys and girls, earnest, carrying knapsacks, wearing khaki-colored shorts, with heavy buttocks and thighs, wandered dully through the town. American soldiers, some in uniform, some in civilian clothes, leaned over bridges, entered bistros in strident, uneasy, smiling packs, circled displays of colored post cards, and picked up meretricious mementos, of a sacred character. All of the beauty of the town, all the energy of the plains, and all the power and dignity of the people seemed to have been sucked out of them by the cathedral. It was as though the cathedral demanded, and received, a perpetual, living sacrifice. It towered over the town, more like an affliction than a blessing, and made everything seem, by comparison with itself, wretched and makeshift indeed. The houses in which the people lived did not suggest shelter, or safety. The great shadow which lay over them revealed them as mere doomed bits of wood and mineral, set down in the path of a hurricane which, presently, would blow them into eternity. And this shadow lay heavy on the people, too. They seemed stunted and misshapen; the only color in their faces suggested too much bad wine and too little sun; even the children seemed to have been hatched in a cellar. It was a town like some towns in the American South, frozen in its history as Lot's wife was trapped in salt, and doomed, therefore, as its history, that overwhelming, omnipresent gift of God, could not be questioned, to be the property of the gray, unquestioning mediocre.
To be a mass tourist, to me, is to become a pure late-date American: alien, ignorant, greedy for something you cannot ever have, disappointed in a way you can never admit. It is to spoil, by way of sheer ontology, the very unspoiledness you are there to experience. It is to impose yourself on places that in all non-economic ways would be better, realer, without you. It is, in lines and gridlock and transaction after transaction, to confront a dimension of yourself that is inescapable as it is painful: As a tourist, you become economically significant but existentially loathsome, an insect on a dead thing.
Getting many tourists these days?"No."The word was so flat and final, Shelby nearly laughed. "You could always try land mines and barbed wire. It amazes me how anyone so in tune with people could dislike them so much."I don't dislike them." Grant heaped eggs on another plate. "I just don't want to be around them.
The spectacular landscape circling the fortress supplies an essential backdrop, inspiring dreamers to wander its ruins for the sake of it; North American tourists, bound down by their practical world view, are able to place those members of the disintegrating tribes they may have seen in their travels among these once-living walls, unaware of the moral distance separating them, since only the semi-indigenous spirit of the South American can grasp the subtle differences.
Industrial tourism is a threat to the national parks. But the chief victims of the system are the motorized tourists. They are being robbed and robbing themselves. So long as they are unwilling to crawl out of their cars they will not discover the treasures of the national parks and will never escape the stress and turmoil of the urban-suburban complexes which they had hoped, presumably, to leave behind for a while.
Before I opened my computer in the parking lot today, I relived one of my favorite memories. It's the one with Woody and me sitting on the steps of the Metropolitan Museum after it's closed. We're watching people parade out of the museum in summer shorts and sandals. The trees to the south are planted in parallel lines. The water in the fountain shoots up with a mist that almost reaches the steps we sit on. We look at silver-haired ladies in red-and-white-print dresses. We separate the mice from the men, the tourists from the New Yorkers, the Upper East Siders from the West Siders. The hot-pretzel vendor sells us a wad of dough in knots with clumps of salt stuck on top. We make our usual remarks about the crazies and wonder what it would be like to live in a penthouse apartment on Fifth Avenue overlooking the Met. We laugh and say the same things we always say. We hold hands and keep sitting, just sitting, as the sun beings to set. It's a perfect afternoon.
To all accusations of excessive development the administrators can reply, as they will if pressed hard enough, that they are giving the public what it wants, that their primary duty is to serve the public not preserve the wilds. "Parks are for people" is the public relations slogan, which decoded means that the parks are for people-in-automobiles. Behind the slogan is the assumption that the majority of Americans, exactly like the managers of the tourist industry, expect and demand to see their national parks from the comfort, security and convenience of their automobiles. Is this assumption correct? Perhaps. Does that justify the continued and increasing erosion of the parks? It does not.
I was hungry when I left Pyongyang. I wasn't hungry just for a bookshop that sold books that weren't about Fat Man and Little Boy. I wasn't ravenous just for a newspaper that had no pictures of F.M. and L.B. I wasn't starving just for a TV program or a piece of music or theater or cinema that wasn't cultist and hero-worshiping. I was hungry. I got off the North Korean plane in Shenyang, one of the provincial capitals of Manchuria, and the airport buffet looked like a cornucopia. I fell on the food, only to find that I couldn't do it justice, because my stomach had shrunk. And as a foreign tourist in North Korea, under the care of vigilant minders who wanted me to see only the best, I had enjoyed the finest fare available.
America is subsidizing what is left of the prestige and strength of the once mighty Britain. The sun has set forever on that monocled, pith-helmeted resident colonialist, sipping tea with his delicate lady in the non-white colonies being systematically robbed of every valuable resource. Britain's superfluous royalty and nobility now exist by charging tourists to inspect the once baronial castles, and by selling memoirs, perfumes, autographs, titles, and even themselves.
Somewhere beyond the battening, urged sweep of three-bedroom houses rushing by their thousands across all the dark beige hills, somehow implicit in an arrogance or bite to the smog the more inland somnolence of San Narciso did lack, lurked the sea, the unimaginable Pacific, the one to which all surfers, beach pads, sewage disposal schemes, tourist incursions, sunned homosexuality, chartered fishing are irrelevant, the hole left by the moon’s tearing-free and monument to her exile; you could not hear or even smell this but it was there, something tidal began to reach feelers in past eyes and eardrums, perhaps to arouse fractions of brain current your most gossamer microelectrode is yet too gross for finding.
It's time now to rent a car, roll down the windows and prepare for your first big thrill: the freeways. They're so much fun they should charge admission. Never fret about zigzagging back and forth through six lanes of traffic at high speeds; it erases jet lag in a split second. You're now heading toward Hollywood, like any normal tourist. Breathe in that smog and feel lucky that only in L. A. will you glimpse a green sun or a brown moon. Forget the propaganda you've heard about clean air; demand oxygen you can see in all its glorious discoloration.
Anything to declare? the customs inspector said."Two pound of uncut heroin and a manual of pornographic art," Mark answered, looking about for Kity. All Americans are comedians, the inspector thought, as he passed Parker through. A government tourist hostess approached him."Are you Mr. Mark Parker?"Guilty.
My aim here was much more straightforward and objective? just to see whether I could match income to expenses, as the truly poor attempt to do every day. Besides, I've had enough unchosen encounters with poverty in my lifetime to know it's not a place you would want to visit for touristic purposes; it just smells too much like fear.
Inigo was in despair. Hard to find on the map (this was after maps) not because cartographers didn’t know of its existence, but because when they visited to measure its precise dimensions, they became so depressed they began to drink and question everything, most notably why anyone would want to be something as stupid as a cartographer. It required constant travel, no one ever knew your name, and, most of all, why bother? There grew up, then, a gentleman’s agreement among mapmakers of the period to keep the place as secret as possible, lest tourists flock there and die. (Should you insist on paying a visit, it’s closer to the Baltic States than most places.)
Meanwhile it's got stormy, the tattered fog even thicker, chasing across my path. Three people are sitting in a glassy tourist cafe between clouds and clouds, protected by glass from all sides. Since I don't see any waiters, it crosses my mind that corpses have been sitting there for weeks, statuesque. All this time the cafe has been unattended, for sure. Just how long have they been sitting here, petrified like this?
The town was sunk in a kind of crystal ball; everyone seemed to be asleep (transcendentally asleep!) no matter if they were walking or sitting outside. Around five the sky clouded over and at six it began to rain. The streets cleared all at once. I had the thought that if it was as if autumn had unsheathed a claw and scratched: everything was coming apart. The tourists running on the sidewalks in search of shelter, the shopkeepers pulling tarps over the merchandise displayed in the street, the increasing number of shop windows closed until next summer. Whether I felt pity or scorn when I saw this, I don't know. Detached from any external stimulus, the only thing I could see or feel with any clarity was myself. Everything else had been bombarded by something dark; movie sets consigned to dust and oblivion, as if for good.
To awaken quite alone in a strange town is one of the pleasantest sensations in the world. You are surrounded by adventure. You have no idea of what is in store for you, but you will, if you are wise and know the art of travel, let yourself go on the stream of the unknown and accept whatever comes in the spirit in which the gods may offer it. For this reason your customary thoughts, all except the rarest of your friends, even most of your luggage - everything, in fact, which belongs to your everyday life, is merely a hindrance. The tourist travels in his own atmosphere like a snail in his shell and stands, as it were, on his own perambulating doorstep to look at the continents of the world. But if you discard all this, and sally forth with a leisurely and blank mind, there is no knowing what may not happen to you.