Friday, October 26, 2007

I am not a tourist

I went to a conference this week in a town which is a popular tourist destination. Mostly, I think, because it has great weather and landscape and some intriguing history.

At the end of the conference, I had some time on my hands. I was not very interested in touristing, but, after talking with my husband on the phone, relented and went out and about a little.

One thing that is popular for a tourist is to go shopping. I would have to suspect that this is popular for people who like to go shopping in the first place. That is not me.

Another thing people like to do is "sight seeing". Looking around for the sake of looking around. I get bored with that as well.

So, for my afternoon out, I did go to a couple of cute places. But I only started enjoying myself when I tried to do "home things" there. I found a library to go to. I read some magazines and got ideas for decorating the family room (we just moved into a house and want to paint it now, instead of right before we're trying to sell it; lesson learned from the relocation).

My laptop battery had died, so I looked at some email, sitting alongside gobs of teenagers. The library had a pretty "tree garden" park around it, so I took a hand-drawn map they'd done of the garden and walked around looking at the trees and learning what their names were.

At a corner there was a sign for where all the different types of churches surrounding the park were. I sought mine out, drove to it, looked at and saw that it was good, and parked there while I went over to another cute shopping area.

In the shopping area one of the first storefronts was an intriguing bookstore. I lost myself in the books, deciding to purchase one called Lost History. My knowledge of Sunnis vs Shiites has increased exponentially. I took the book to the restaurant next door and read it while having a happy hour.


So, as described, this was not touristing. Probably some of the nicest "not touristing" I've done in a long time. ;-)

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