When I was a teenager in a tourist destination (Ft. Lauderdale, Florida area), I sure didn’t like tourists. They showed up and drove strangely, got horrible sunburns, and asked ignorant questions. Grr. They filled “our” restaurants.
I currently spent half my time in another tourist destination, where natives carefully avoid downtown or our beautiful parks during certain times of the year, since so many people show up to party and have fun at festivals. We grumble, but know the economy needs it.
Right now I’m the tourist in New Orleans. I have done tourist activities like bus tours that crowd the streets, and walking tours that crowd the sidewalks. I sure wouldn’t want to live where my house is photographed by people like Suna all day long. Certainly living in the French Quarter would require a special patience.
I see tourists wandering around getting blitzed and screeching about things, and they are contributing to the economy, I guess.
Then I see our group asking question after question to learn more about the area. I see us making connections in local shops (I bought yarn!). This is good tourism, as far as I’m concerned.Continue reading “It’s Okay to Be a Tourist”