Much like little kids go to the zoo
to see the new and wonderful animals
, people travel
to human zoos outside their own to see new ways of interaction
. In Shanghai
, pale devils
can be seen observing the locals (or transplants like me) eat stuff like snake
, while they gutlessly gasp at our brave stomachs and refuse to participate. I've heard "barbarian
" quite a few times, and it offended me. I can probably speak English
better and have better table manners
than those flower-shirted tourists
, yet they call me a "barbarian
"? Once I said "Excuse me?" in an American
accent and they all scampered off.
Wide-eyed and dazzled, the tourists wander among the human zoo animals, observing the sights, living a slight mindfuck, but always disdaining from actual participation, because it is too strange for their hard-wired heads and their "Western" cultures. Soon, they get sick of the new scenery, and yearn for the old days and leave, having acquired the "been there, done that" bragging rights.
Some delve into new cultures, the backpackers, and enjoy the mindfuck to the full, a full "high", one might call it. They eat the strange animals, gesture like fools trying to imitate the animals, and sometimes live among them for a bit. Inevitably, they crash and burn when they realize that the culture here is the same old boring life routines as in America, just with less sugar. That's right, nobody lives on the Great Wall, except for the souvenir vendors. Off they go, back to America, disappointed with the lack of magic in travel, and return to their dreary lives, until the next opportunity for international mindfuck presents itself.