August 27th, 2004

Ant

Money

Not a subject that is very interesting, and, as some stated cleary, the root of all evil. You need it to travel, but I think, and I'm sure I have said so before, that the expensive option is not always the best option.

Having worked in the tourism industry for a decade I have become allergic for package holidays and organised excursions. In my experience travelling should be about what I want, not what someone else thinks I would like to see.

Sometimes you just don't have the option, one cannot always avoid excursions. So in the last 4 weeks I did two. And the difference was like day and night. In south Argentina I did a one day trip, cheap, not much included, but I had a great day. Just a mini bus full of people who want to go to the glacier and throughout the day we had a lot of fun together. We had to walk everywhere, we had to pay extra's like a boattrip, we were from all kind of different countries, agegroups, backgrounds, but we got on very well and exchanged emailaddresses to send each other some pictures.

Crossing the border was the expensive excursion. Again we went with a bus, saw some beautiful nature, but there was no group atmosphere at all. It took us over an hour to pick up everybody from their respective hotels, I haven't spoken to at least half of the group. All the Brazilians stuck together as if they were told not to talk to any foreigner, some couples couldn't be bothered to socialize at all and others were busier with looking good or looking bored than actually enjoying the incredibly surroundings.

Money makes people not enjoy their lives. It spoils many of us. It is sometimes better to actually carry your own luggage instead of having someone do so. It can be more fun to take public transport instead of a taxi. One does not always need several stars to sleep well. Some backpackers say that backpacking is not an option, it is the only way to travel. Often I agree with them.
emu

coincidence?

gerbie’s LJ on August 20:


Back in town center I had an interesting conversation with a girl who is part of a group petitioning to get a lot of big shots, amongs them Pinochet, to trial, for murdering some locals. She herself lost her grandfater ten years before she was born. Not only was he a member of the socialist party, also was he a Mabuche, the original population of the south of Chili, a minority that has been oppressed for ages.

BBC-world news, exactly one week later, august 27:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/americas/3604122.stm