Traveler or Tourist?

This post is in response to The Daily One Word Prompt and this week’s word is tourist.
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Upon reading the word tourist, the first word that popped into my mind was traveler. Currently, I am laying here in my bed, contemplating the weight of each of these terms. Are traveler and tourist mutually exclusive? If one identifies as a traveler, does this negate being a tourist? If one identifies as a tourist, does this negate being a traveler? These are just some of the questions consuming my mind at 12 midnight here in Cape Town, South Africa.
 
I believe that binary systems of thinking are often problematic in that they force us to neatly package ourselves into categorical boxes that we were never meant to fit in.
 
Am I a tourist? Am I a traveler? Am I both? Am I neither?
 
I would honestly say that I don’t consider myself a tourist or a traveler, but instead a human being that is in love with this Earth and everything that it selflessly offers us. I take advantage of every opportunity that I can get my hands on, whether it is independent travel (Cameroon) or through my undergrad university (Morocco) or my graduate university (South Africa).
 
I am a 25 year old female that seeks intimacy with countries I was not born in, languages I do not speak, food I have not tasted, cultures in which I was not raised in, and people I have yet to meet. If this makes me a traveler in the eyes of others, then so be it. And if this makes me a tourist in the eyes of others, then so be it…
 
Traveler, tourist, or both. I’m just me.
 
Warmest, Lauren K.

Tourist

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2 Comments Add yours

  1. Sue says:

    I like your contemplation of the subject matter. Written in a voice similar to the one that goes on in my head. Enjoy your travels!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Sue! Thank you so much for the comment. My first comment on my blog, as I am new to this! It is a thought that always floats around in my mind as I visit other countries. Thank you so much and take care!

      Liked by 1 person

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