Sought-after experience lets you multiply your possible existence; getting a piece, or a taste, of many lives, as you tell yourself you know what it would have been like. Travel becomes the main new experience people remember when sex and intoxication stop being the sole authoritative ones. What did you do last year? "Well, I took a trip to Washington"--or London, or Katmandu. While traveling somewhere else, you can simulate to yourself: "If I were another, this is how I would feel." If I had been born to royalty, I would have filled a throne in a palace like this. If I had been a peasant, my prayers would have risen in a little church like this one. If I had no job--if I had become an "artist"--I could sit all day in a café, as I'm doing now. The water-cooler conversation in which job holders have the best relief from work revolves around the places they're going or have been. Even dispatched someplace by the company, you gather the experiences that will last, for amusement, and knowledge, and the taste of another existence, through many ordinary days. Most travel is local: not only is there a Japan, but a Japanese restaurant, or Japantown in a big city. Each moment that you say to yourself, "This is how they do it," you feel another life, and the phantom of experience.
just thought it was kinda nice, not really sure what specifically I thought about it when I first read it