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Anyone else feeling conflicted about focusing on yourself and travel pleasure when the world's in such a mess now?

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Mar 21st, 2003, 06:46 AM
  #1
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Anyone else feeling conflicted about focusing on yourself and travel pleasure when the world's in such a mess now?

I log on and my internet browser automatically brings up a home page that is devoted to the war. I read the newspaper thoroughly about the war because I'm very very concerned about its implications for the world. Then, I log on to Fodor's where all of us are basically just thinking about our own needs and pleasures--especially when it comes to the truly hedonistic posts like needing to find the best hotel, best food, best wine etc. I truly believe that travel is educational and the best way to overcome regional and nationalistic differences so maybe sometime we can end up with a world where we don't have to fight. So, I really am conflicted.

We just got back from a marvelous (thanks to assistance from many people here) trip to Spain on Saturday, and picked up the trip pictures yesterday. I'm still high from the trip and would like to share it, and any advice and experiences from our other trips with others. But, I also start to say to myself, Get real here, What's really important in the world today? And, morally, I don't think that planning a nice personal vacation is of top importance, but on the other hand, I did just have a nice trip and would like others to have one too. And, I know that life goes on and we basically have to live for today because there are no guarantees. Maybe I should just tell myself that this is really a nice bit of escapism from today's world realities. Is anyone else having mixed feelings about thinking about travel for pleasure in a time of world crisis?
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Mar 21st, 2003, 06:55 AM
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The world has always been in turmoil but much more so since 9/11. The brave young men and women in our U.S. Armed Forces are out there putting their lives on the line so that we can continue to enjoy our freedoms and the lifestyle we're accustom to.

As long as we do not forget THEM, as long as we continue to offer them our prayers and our support, I think we should go on with our lives.
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Mar 21st, 2003, 06:57 AM
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I feel no more conflicted about booking travel, than I would buying shoe polish, or tickets to a movie, or bottle of good brandy - - or any of the countless other items of everyday life that are orders of magnitude separated from the needs for medicine, food, energy and shelter felt by the Kurds, the people of Kosovo or Chechnya, terribly impoverished or challenged people in THIS country, or our soldiers who slept in a Humvee last night.

I have to go on living my life, providing for my family, adding to the quality of life for the patients I care for, making money - - AND spending it, hand over fist, providing jobs and food on the table in someone else's household - - in America AND in the countries who sell goods and services here.

The tax dollars and charity dollars generated by the society in which I will keep trying to function - - are an integral part of getting SOME of these messes around the world straightened out.

I guess - - instead of taking our family of five to Europe in May - - we could go to some spiritial retreat and pray. And in the process, perhaps gain no better understanding of others who see things differently than we see them here in Ohio, USA.

Not my style.

Thanks for starting the thread, though.

Best wishes,

Rex
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Mar 21st, 2003, 07:14 AM
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No!

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Mar 21st, 2003, 08:17 AM
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When Israeli and Palestine people were being terrorized by each other, did Americans stop traveling altogether? Did we say "what's happening to the world?" No. We went about our business because it didn't have anything to do with us. The world isn't a mess right now anymore than it was pre 9/11.
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Mar 21st, 2003, 08:24 AM
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No. I just saw something on TV that echoed my sentiments exactly. A man who wrote a book about fear, entitled Fear, was responding to the question of whether life should go on as normal, whether sporting events, entertainment venues, travel, etc. should be postponed. He basically said that he sees no useful purpose in people sitting around and praying, or not leading their lives as normal. When you think about it, what good are you doing for anyone? It isn't helpful to anybody for us to put our lives on hold. Just the opposite. Better to contribute to the economy, set a good example for children, and I personally don't see how leading life to it's fullest is immoral.

I happen to agree with him 100%.
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Mar 21st, 2003, 08:32 AM
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Also, just saw something on local news that they are looking for volunteers to help with smallpox vaccines. I'm calling up to see what I can do. Rather than feeling conflicted, we can see if there is anything we can do to help.
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Mar 21st, 2003, 08:44 AM
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I'm with you on this, julies. The conflict within me is between head and heart. Head says I'll be more fulfilled pursuing self interests; heart says otherwise.

My wife has it figured out better than I. She spends a couple weeks each summer in Romania working at a camp for orphans and other under-privileged children. That, and visits to places along the way to and from covers both head and heart. I'm still looking for an orphan's camp in Tuscany.
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Mar 21st, 2003, 08:56 AM
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Indeed. I have just got back to Manchester from Paris and loathe to put a report in. This is for two reasons: firstly, I felt it indulgent given the accelerating suffering of all who are involved in the current Iraq War; and secondly, I did not wish to risk a chain of messages that insulted the French.
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Mar 21st, 2003, 10:14 AM
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Nina, I'd be interested in helping with distributing the vaccine. In what area of the country are they asking for help?
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Mar 21st, 2003, 10:55 AM
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Yes, I feel somewhat conflicted, but "we" promised my granddaughter two years ago that we would go to Paris when she was 11. She turned 11 last month. How could we know there would be a war in progress? This trip has been planned for over 6 months. How often should I postpone it?
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Mar 21st, 2003, 11:00 AM
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nina,

I suspect he is right about not just sitting around. I will heartily disagree with his comments on prayer. The Bible says to pray without dceasing.

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Mar 21st, 2003, 11:00 AM
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Actually, my last trip & my next trip are business-related travel, but naturally I will be doing some sightseeing while in Rome. Like Rex, I couldn't see how sitting home worrying is going to do anyone any good. Some people find going somewhere else relaxing, and may be under a lot of stress, so I see no problem with this. Not planning a vacation isn't going to help the war effort in any way that I can see. Actually, our freedom to plan, decide, choose, and take vacations is what makes our nation great. Some people don't feel comfortable going anywhere right now, and would prefer to be in more familiar surroundings, and near their loved ones. Both POVs are valid, and should be respected, IMO.

BC
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Mar 21st, 2003, 11:04 AM
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Very good point bookckick!

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Mar 21st, 2003, 11:08 AM
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No, actually I don't feel conflicted, but that doesn't mean I don't feel concern or support for the troops we have stationed in the MidEast. Every day life continues war or not. What good would it do to stop traveling or stop any other recreational past time that one enjoys?
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Mar 21st, 2003, 12:48 PM
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I will continue to live lavishly, spending thousands on clothes, food, French wine, and fabulous trips around the world. (I am going to Buenos Aires in May.) Why should I feel guilty? It's my party and I'll fly if I want to.
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Mar 21st, 2003, 01:18 PM
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How could anyone add anything to that insightful, thoughtful post?!

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Mar 21st, 2003, 01:24 PM
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I know...I couldn't even come up with a good comeback. I am speechless!
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Mar 21st, 2003, 01:46 PM
  #19
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Perhaps, BC, being business-related (assuming it's priority and you must go) makes your decision and rationale unlike the person who decide on a purely personal trip. If one is free to decide to go or not, free of busines consdieration, isn't that likely to entail more pressure? And what if you must consider potential risk to kids if they go along, compared with staying put at home. You point was interesting, BC, but perhaps the decision you make is less your own, and consequently ... easier, perhaps-?
 
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Mar 21st, 2003, 01:48 PM
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Yes. I really would like to be able to affect a change in the minds of the world's decision makers, but it seems I cannot. So I will travel, and do my best to stop the killing. ( While travelling if necessary).
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