When I travel, I undoubtedly look like a Tourist no matter how hard I try not to. Of course, there are times and places when making it clear that you are a tourist is helpful, but in some circumstances, it’s not really what you want to advertise. It’s undoubtedly my goofy hat along with my iPhone in hand for picture-taking, while donning my sack o’ plenty (purse) that I always have with me which are dead giveaways that I am simply a visitor, but it is what it is. What can I say?! I am a fair-skinned gal who needs water, lotion, Benadryl, handwipes and ‘everything else, but the kitchen sink’ that will fit in there. You know, just in case. I am sure that some of you can relate to the need to feel prepared. Plus, I have to house my husband’s things, as he refuses to tote a bag fearing that he’ll be teased for having a ‘murse’ (aka man’s purse). Though a ‘murse’ is common in Europe and many other places, it seems not to be a popular item for men here in Western Canada.
As for travelling itself, I have a colleague who is about to pursue her doctorate degree in International Studies (something specifically to do with helping refugees) and she frequents many far away, war-torn countries happily back-packing, staying in hostels, etc. While I admire her adventurous, risk-taking nature, I must admit that her and my idea of a vacation are vastly different. Don’t get me wrong…experiencing different cultures, helping people, exploring other parts of the world, trying new things, hearing another language, etc. all appeal to me, but I guess I must be in the category of ‘princess’ travellers, if there is such a thing. Not that I expect royal service by any means, just that I tend to fancy vacation spots wherein my needs & wants are easily met and/or taken care of. I like tropical places that differ from our northerly cool climate. I like staying in a hotel with maid service. I like indulging in good food that is made for me. I like not having to think about the basics of what I am going to eat, where I am going to sleep, how I am going to get where I need to go and whether or not it will be safe for me to be there–though all travellers need to obviously beware.
My goal a decade ago was to make it to as many different continents as I could…a goal I’ve heard from others as well. The truth is that I haven’t done very well in that regard since I have only travelled within North America and Europe to date. There are so many places just within my own country that I haven’t even been to yet, as sad as it is to say. The thing is that I seem to have found some really nice places that both my husband and I like to visit time and time again. I guess in that sense you could think of us as vacationers who are ‘(happily) stuck in fifth gear’, so to speak. Within my travels, I have been fortunate enough to do some cruises in the Caribbean, a European bus tour (as previously mentioned & highly recommended as a safe and easy way to see many places), Mexico, Cuba and a couple of southwestern U.S. states, along with Hawaii. Needless to say, all destinations of mine (ours) have been somewhat exotic as opposed to exploratory or risqué. And, that’s okay because everyone’s idea of what makes a good trip varies. Your idea might be the same as my colleague’s, the same as me or somewhere in between. Either way, travelling is something that many of us love to do.
I still have a desire to hit some of the other continents, if the opportunity allows. It’s just that these silly little things called, ‘work’ and ‘needing to make money’ by which to pay bills seem to somewhat impede my ability to live life as a full-time tourist. It’s too bad too because my tan-coloured, floppy hat and giant sack are always ‘just a ready and waitin’ for the next trip. Full-time or not, I don’t mind being referred to #theobvioustourist because it means that I have the chance to wear my infamous, giveaway gear doing something that I love to do. Travel:-) Many safe, happy travels to you! Best wishes. #theobvioustourist