Travel works a great transformation from within.
Travel broadens the mind.
Travel makes you more tolerant.
Travel shrinks the World.
Travel brings the people of the World closer.
Why I Hate Some Travel Blog Posts?
This does seem like a Utopian dream, doesn’t it? But I do believe in this dream, at least to a large extent. But occasionally I come across a random post by a self-styled ‘travel blogger’ that punctures this Utopian dream.
These are posts by people who travel in the physical sense but are mentally confined within the four walls of their own homes, villages, cities or countries. They do not realize that there is a whole new world out there which has a different way of living and doing. For them, there exists only one yardstick and that is their own rusty one.
I get really angry when I read such ill-informed, presumptive and patronizing posts for the following reasons:
These posts revel in generalizations, they generalize about a country, its people and its culture. What really rankles is that they put on an air of expertise which presumably they have acquired over their vast experience of having spent 24 hours in that country!
They take one experience and extrapolate it to the entire country, its people and culture. Some of them scrounge for accommodation in the dingiest of places, places that even the lowest of the locals would not touch with a barge pole and then write in their posts about the miserable living conditions.
I am fine with a candid and honest write-up, but the question is; are you qualified and experienced enough to pass judgment?
This is another of the ills that infect the kind of articles that I am referring to. You are scammed or robbed by a person of a particular community or race or country and immediately you rush to stereotype the entire community, race, and country as thieves and scamsters. It is worth reminding these self-styled travel writers that all kinds of people make up all types of countries and communities. The good, bad and the ugly exist in every religion, country, and community including their own.
Some of the posts assume a patronizing tone, an attitude like – “I am OK, You are not OK”! Just because things are done in a different way does not mean that they are necessarily an inferior method. It could actually turn out that you were yourself wrong all these years, but your myopic vision ensured that you thought what you did was right!
I am reminded of one specific instance where one of our “travel experts” who was on a voyage of “discovery” to an exotic land asked for some “real food” as he was hungry to the puzzlement of his hosts. He did not realize that what was in front of him was “food” for them!
Some posts take great pride in highlighting the negative aspects of a place, people, country or culture. The pity is that they have not even understood all the aspects before putting pen to paper. What is the motivation that drives them to do this? Is it mere insensitivity or a desire to attract more readers who in turn chip in with their “expert comments”.
The list of the symptoms that afflict this kind of diseased posts is endless. The only saving grace here is that these are small in number and are swamped by the more transformative, informative and inspirational pieces by real travelers with a real passion for exploring and understanding the World and its incredible treasures.
Travel opens doors and I hope some day the doors of the minds of these ‘travelers’ open and let in the sunshine of knowledge and tolerance.
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