Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Vacations (and why I don't like cruises)

Today my mom told me that we're going on a cruise in the beginning of January.

I really should be excited, but I'm not. My sister's practically jumping with joy, but I'm pretty indifferent. I'm not dreading it, but I'm not sure how I feel about cruises.

I've been on two, so I know what they're like, and I don't like the feeling I get on them. I feel extremely isolated from the world. You're putting people on a boat with basically no access to the real world and no way to get off. You reach a destination, but it's a tiny and desolate island.

Well, maybe I'm exaggerating. Things have changed since the last time I've been on one back in 2007. Technology has made the world increasingly open, and the ability to communicate with anyone, no matter where they are, is no longer a problem. And the islands really aren't that tiny and desolate.

But these islands certainly aren't wealthy. People visit them, they take excursions, they spend their money in the fancy restaurants and bars. That's not really what the islands are like. I've been to the poorer parts of some of them, and I saw people living in shacks and huts. Since then, I honestly can't look at those places the same.

It's a world of ignorance, the cruiser's vacation. They pretend these islands are exotic, they gush over the beautiful landscapes and the nice parts of towns, but the people that live there struggle to make a living. And I'm paying money to look at them as if they're an exhibit. As if they're part of the attraction. I'm there for all the wrong reasons.

I'm over-analyzing this to the extreme, but that's honestly my sentiment. I despise feeling like a tourist. I want to be a traveler, not a tourist. And yes, they are entirely different.


  1. I don't think you're over-analyzing at all. I think it's very good that you approach this from a moral viewpoint and recognize the wrongs of the capitalist system. I'd say continue to do what you're doing. You may end up a world-changer.

  2. I went on a cruise in 2010, and I really really liked it! ….except….. the islands. You're completely right. I really didn't feel comfortable there. It was a bit unnerving. And it was sad, and weird, and so so so so hot.

  3. I went on a cruise about three weeks ago, and I loved it. It was so much fun and there was so much dancing and food. As for the islands: i can tell you, because I know first hand,that these islands rely on tourism. Every job in these islands is directly related to tourism.sure, they may not be the best jobs in the world, but it is a hell of a lot better than not having a job at all, as was the case before these cruise ships came in.

  4. I just started reading your blog tonight (and think I will keep reading it because I really like what I'm reading) and I just felt the need to comment on this one.

    Two summers ago, I went to a resort for a week in Mexico with my step-sister's family and I could never exactly explain to people why I didn't like it. Reading this post finally helped me understand--it was the same thing with the feeling like a tourist when you want to feel like a traveler. Thanks for writing this. I appreciate it. <3


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