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March 24, 2007


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Your post made me recall a scene in one of my favorite films, The Sheltering Sky:

Tunner (Campbell Scott) We're probably the first tourists they've had since the war.

Kit Moresby (Debra Winger) Tunner, we're not tourists. We're travelers.

Tunner Oh. What's the difference?

Port Moresby (John Malkovich) A tourist is someone who thinks about going home the moment they arrive, Tunner.

Kit Moresby Whereas a traveler might not come back at all.

Tunner You mean I'm a tourist.

Kit Moresby Yes, Tunner. And I'm half and half.

I often think how nice it would be not to have to think of returning to work and "home" but being able to be a traveler. Perhaps when I retire.

Lee Kottner

Heh, that's weird. I almost picked up Sheltering Sky in the bookstore the other day (and yes, I can manage to find an English-language bookstore wherever I am; part of my talent for being able to find the coolest and most expensive item in any store within five minutes). Then I ran across a version of that quote in the book I did pick up (Manuel Vazquez Montalban's The Buenos Aires Quintet): . . . "he had read, possibly in a book by Bowles, that the difference between a tourist and a traveller is that the one knows the limits of his journey, while the other yields to the open-ended logic of the voyage." By that definition, I was a traveller the last time, but closer to being a tourist, sadly, this time. I'm with you, Roger. Wish I had the time and money to wander at will.


"part of my talent for being able to find the coolest and most expensive item in any store within five minutes"

That, my dear, is called having good taste, methinks ('cuz I can do that, too!)

Glad you enjoyed La Boqueria--the closest thing I'd ever seen to it was the food halls at Harrod's in London, and those only offer a fraction of the abundance at La Boqueria. A total foodie delight.

Now this is making me really hungry...

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