Just found an interesting post on an excellent blog called The Taoist Poet.
Here's a quote:
"So travel may potentially serve as an inspiration to help widen your field of knowledge and understanding, to help you see things from a larger more global perspective, but it's not a guarantee, it depends on the person, on how they interpret things, on whether their mind is open or closed, whether their heart is filled with love or hate."
I agree. This echoes much of what Hakim Bey, Philip Cousineau, Thoreau, and others have written. Without an attentive and open mind, travel degenerates into tourism-- a vacation, a transaction, a controlled experience.
But there is another way, as Hakim Bey notes, "We suspect that even though travel in the modern world seems to have been taken over by the Commodity - even though the networks of convivial reciprocity seem to have vanished from the map - even though tourism seems to have triumphed - even so - we continue to suspect that other pathways still persist, other tracks, unofficial, not noted on the map, perhaps even «secret»- pathways still linked to the possibility of an economy of the Gift, smugglers' routes for freespirits, known only to the geomantic guerillas of the art of travel.
As a matter of fact, we don't just «suspect» it. We know it. We know there exists an art of travel. "