This article reminded me of one of my many prejudices. I don't understand what people get out of many tourist vacations. The trips aren't authentic, relaxing, meaningful, or thoughtful. I really don't understand places like (dare I offend someone?) Las Vegas. Cities are usually stressful and expensive. I am more of a National Parks kind of guy. I also like beaches, since they are perhaps the most democratic destination. I love that a poor person can go to a beach and enjoy the experience just as much as a rich person. The sun, sand, and water are free. Back in college I used to stand on the pier at Pismo and look out over the families having a good time. It made me very happy.
I like good weather and impressive geography, I guess. I like catching up with friends and meeting interesting people. And it isn't that I don't like all manmade stuff. I once went down to the Ohio River with James Waite to look at the locks. That was good fun.
When I went to London as a tourist I wanted to be the first tourist to never look at Big Ben. It was tough but my companions warned me if I started to look in its direction. I succeeded. It was a silly, even stupid, exercise. But I guess I have felt this way for a long time.