World Tourism Day

Its world tourism day and the theme being inclusive growth.

What actually do we mean by inclusive growth? By definition inclusive growth implies direct link between macroeconomic and microeconomic determinants of the economy and economic growth. The definition talks about microeconomic dimension capturing structural transformation for economic diversification and competition while macro is about economic aggregates like total productivity and aggregate factors. Now how this becomes relevant in tourism sector I’m a little confused.

 For as far as I can see tourists are the only elements that are more corrosive than the missionaries. They destroy places they patronize. We had beautiful sand, coastline in Goa which was initially encroached on by the Cidade ‘Goa group, they appropriated the beach line and local fisher folk were shut out without livelihood. Now with Tata’s taking over Cidade more trees are cut down, the towering buildings are causing greyscaping of the horizons. The beach which pretended to still be open to locals is now definitely appropriated.

Once upon a time, the pilgrim was the tourist, and I have shared some insights to pilgrimages in my post the pilgrims’ progress.    currently travel and tourism have the exact opposite affect experiences are now being transformed to exploitative commercial affair – a kind of voyeuristic form of entertainment, the native population and their culture becomes the purchasable commodity. The relationship between the tourist and the native is reduced to a kind of neo-colonial experiential commerce. This leads to artificial preservation of local identities. For this becomes essential for tourism.  In a way the tourist represents both an attempt to transcend borders and identities and simultaneously tries to fix the local culture within its gaze.

I recollect reading an American Indian I think Russell Means I do not remember the last name, observing that tourists came around looked into their Tipis. It didn’t bother them that people lived there. They untied the flaps, and barged right in, touching their things and inspecting things poking into clothes pile and bedrolls. The Indians felt annoyed that the tourists feel they have the god given right to intrude everywhere. We see that in tourists who visit the sacred places at Goa I have documented them in The terroist called the tourist

Somewhere I think the difference is a tourist takes his culture along with him, while a traveller leaves his culture behind and is open to learning new thoughts

In a way being a tourist is to escape accountability. The errors and failings from back home no longer cling to you. It is possible to drift across continents, languages and suspending thoughts. To be frank tourism is the march of stupidity; it’s expected from the tourist, after all the entire mechanism of the host country is geared to travellers acting stupidly. On rented vehicles squinting at the Google maps, it’s difficult to talk to people, to figure out what to eat and where to eat.  Being stupid is the pattern interestingly it is possible to exist in this state for months on. Being a tourist grants immunities and freedom. You can wear bright ill-fitting clothes, ride battered hired scooters, click pictures of yourself and random people get haggard, dysenteric stay thirsty. There is nothing really to think about but the next shapeless event.

To be part of the world tourism day

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