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Monday, April 28, 2014

No Charge

My advice to young American travelers: Leave your “University of Nobody Gives a Shit” T-shirts at home. If there’s ever a time when you should be thinking outside the tribe it’s when you’re traveling.*

Many years ago when I lived in Greece I was in the lobby of a small hotel on a remote island where I was staying when three young dudes approached the woman at the desk. The old gal only spoke Greek and after some fumbling between them I stepped in and translated. Afterwards one of the dudes who was wearing a Harvard T-shirt told me that he spoke French. “So do I but we’re in Greece,” I replied. He just had to let everyone know that he went to Harvard and he had to let me know that he spoke French, as if by not telling me he would be forfeiting the intellectual high ground he held by going to Harvard.

*Un consejo para los jóvenes viajeros estadounidenses: Dejad vuestras "Universidad de a nadie le importa una mierda" camisetas en casa. Si alguna vez hay un momento en que debéis pensar fuera de la tribu es cuando estáis de viaje.

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