Sunday August 22nd, 2010

The exercise:

The prompt today: the tourist.

Kat and I played tourist on our day off today at the Osoyoos Desert Center. We did the guided tour at noon (thankfully it was a cooler day or we would have melted) and it was really good. Learned all about black widows, rattlesnakes, and the less venomous flora and fauna of my new home.


He's come every summer, without fail, to visit our sleepy little town. We all know him by sight, if not by name, and exchange friendly greetings at every encounter.

But nobody seems to know where he comes from, or why exactly he keeps returning here. Some say he's searching for something, others that he's just escaping the hustle of some big city for a few weeks of peace and quiet every year. I've heard my mom say she thinks he's wooing one of the local spinsters.

Me? I've got no idea, to be honest. But I intend to find out.


g2 (la pianista irlandesa) said...

That sounds like a heck of a beginning. I sense a continuations prompt in this blog's future...

I come from a little tourist town in the East, very popular in the summertime. The businesses like it, surely, but the locals are kind of mixed. At the very least, many of my peers aren't all that favorable when it comes to tourists.

Myself, I don't mind the influx in activity. It's interesting to see people, and it's nice to see people enjoying themselves. It's a sort of compliment, I think, to where we live: people actually want to visit the place we call home. Yes, we locals have to deal with the occasional silly tourist question, such as how to pronounce the name of the town, and where the lake is (while standing no more than five hundred feet away from aforementioned lake), but as we say in Spanish: there are no roses without thorns.
- - - - - - - - - -
First Daily Writing having reached legal age. Woo!

Greg said...

@g2: I can sympathise about the silly tourist questions; I live in London! I sometimes wonder if there aren't more tourists than locals....

@Marc: That sounds like a fun trip, and learning about the venomous wildlife is definitely a good idea. Especially when you're farming. (Which reminds me, how's that second blog looking?)
I love the idea that your tourist might be wooing a local spinster on an annual basis -- that's quite a long-term romance!

The tourist
"We called it the Grand Sneer," said Bessie. She was sat in the Turpentine lounge of the Many-Trees Nursing home talking to her best friend and new cripple, Adelaide.
"Surely you mean the Grand Tour? When you'd go to Europe and spend three months visiting different countries and monied families." Adelaide sighed and a finger dropped off.
"That's what our parents called it," Bessie nudged the finger under Adelaide's chair so as not to call attention to it. "But we called it the Grand Sneer because we turned up and spent six months saying how much better things were at home."
"You met Maxibillion there, didn't you? He had the most magnificent stables." Adelaide sighed again and another finger dropped off, bouncing under the chair of its own volition.
"Oh yes, the Eternal Tourist. The man scarcely knew his own family but he could name the manager of every worthwhile hotel in Monte Carlo, Spain and Italy."
"You married him, didn't you?" Adelaide's voice was growing weaker and she grew tired, and she slumped back in her wheelchair and started drooling.
"Oh yes," said Bessie, ringing for the nurse.

morganna said...

I wander in and out all the little stores
Looking for that one thing to change my life
I can never find at home.
Sadly for me (but not my wallet)
I can find nothing I could not find at home.

Heather said...

Marc- He must be quite a character to keep so many generations in the town talking. I would like to meet him.

G2- Silly tourist question #1: Where do you live? By the way, well written.

Greg- I do hop Adelaide survives the night. Body parts just falling to the ground seems a serious health issue.

Morganna- Loved the poem.

John had complained frequently that I made a poor tourist. At the last stop, I snuck into the disembarking crowd and disappeared around the corner. I was exhausted of posed pictures and tight smiles, of lectures and shortened histories, of directed moments and inadequate schedules. I wanted more for my mind, more from Mexico. I knew he would be mad, probably panicked that I had been abducted by a low-life thug who would demand a ransom in American dollars. Even that was preferable to another flash followed by "now if you will all come this way." Slowly I wandered away from the main group and found a country away from the pristine shoreline of tourism. I'm not sure I will ever return from whence I came.

Zhongming said...

Phew! I am really busy at work since the school is starting next week. Here's a short one, and nothing to do with the prompt... Just what I'm feeling currently.

Walking down the streets slowly
Observing the surrounding alone 
Thinking deeply about the past
It never cease to break my heart

Marc said...

g2 - yeah, I suppose that's continuation worthy. I shall keep it in mind :)

Your little town sounds a lot like here - right down to tourists wondering how to pronounce the name! I'm kinda looking forward to the fall when the hordes disappear for the winter...

Also: happy birthday! I hope it was an awesome one :D

Greg - ah yes, the farm blog. It's... still a work in progress :P

Loved this bit: "But we called it the Grand Sneer because we turned up and spent six months saying how much better things were at home."

Morganna - I can relate to that, most definitely.

Heather - that's great. This really hit home for me: "Even that was preferable to another flash followed by "now if you will all come this way.""

I've traveled extensively on my own and, without fail, every time I saw a tour group I'd shudder and feel grateful for being on my own schedule.

Zhongming - good luck with work and that's a lovely poem. No worries about having nothing to do with the prompt :)