Ralph Waldo Emerson, who did a fair amount of traveling, criticized it as a “fool’s paradise.” “I have no churlish objection to the circumnavigation of the globe” for art or study, he wrote. But he wondered if travel led to individual growth. “I pack my trunk, embrace my friends, embark on the sea, and at last wake up in Naples; and there beside me is the stern fact, the sad self, unrelenting, identical, that I fled from.” A lighter, updated version of this idea can be found in a >New Yorker cartoon in which one woman recounts her travels—not Naples this time, but Tuscany. “Florence was fabulous!” she is saying to an acquaintance. “Wi-Fi to die for!”
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