I watched a bit of a DVD of 1,000 Places to See Before You Die, and there’s this WASP Ken and Barbie couple traveling the world on honeymoon seeing them all. First off:
1. I’m totally jealous – what the heck did they do to get this opportunity? Someone’s PAYING for their trip all around the world? It’s so unfair.
2. Why couldn’t they pick a couple with personality? These two don’t say anything funny, interesting, or memorable. They are polite and nice to everyone – super boring. They are even polite and nice with each other. I’m not looking for a Survior episode, but a bit of animation would be nice.
3. Why did they pick a couple who look like they are used to getting everything they want? Why not pick someone who’s an artist or professional triathlete or business owner (yeah, a business owner who knows the value of a dollar, importance of motivating staff, interacting with customers, how to market a service or product). People who don’t dress and talk like they went to prep school and got their own car from their parents when they turned 16, spend thousands on clothes each year…Hmmpf.
4. I lived in France for almost 8 years, based in Paris. I traveled a lot. Watching the French part was terribly annoying. Taillevent is NOT the best restaurant in town, though it’s been there forever and overlooks Notre Dame. And why have them eating alone in the restaurant? Why not have the real experience, which includes other diners around you, looking out at the sparkling lights and the Seine at night, having a rather snooty waiter serve you (I remember being afraid of making a mistake in front of our waiter).
I suppose it makes sense that they pick the most historic, well-known Paris sights.
But frankly, traveling is best when you go beyond looking at the buildings and learning about what happened there in the 1400’s. It’s about the people you meet! Travel can be incredibly lonely and isolating if the only interactions with people you have are locals selling you tickets and serving you food. And after a few churches or museums, they all blend together into one big mass that you can’t recall later.
I think that my “don’t-tell-me-what-t0-do” gene has fired up about this one!
Oh man, I’d LOVE to go back exploring through Europe. And Turkey. And Vietnam. And Peru…