Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Oh the Places You'll Go

I went to see Stephanie Elizondo Griest read/speak at McNally Robinson today. Her book is titled 100 Places Every Woman Should Go and she's certainly the most enthusiastic author I've ever seen. Seems very pleasant and like a lovely person. The topic of the book is something I'm of two minds on. On the one hand, yes it's great for a woman to travel. On the other hand, why should women go to places because they're women? Why shouldn't both men and women go to these places? After all, I might want to go to places in a book entitled 100 Places Every Man Should Go should such a book exist. There's a lot more thought and nuance in the subject, of course, but you can see where I'm coming from, no? I do not want my travel to be gender-determined.

I think part of the problem for me might be that I'm not so into the idea my womanhood. I don't mean femininity by that but the idea that I'm part of a community of women. I don't think of other women as my sisters--except for my real sister, of course--nor do I think I have some kind of bond with other women solely due to the fact that we have two X chromosomes. The touchy-feely aspect just doesn't work for me. Along a similar vein, Griest talked quite a bit about "mother road" and while I've traveled a bit I can't say I've ever thought of travelling in terms of trusting to "mother road" or something of that sort. Mainly because I think that sort of stuff is kind of crap.

This sounds critical and I don't really mean it to be. It's just a difference in outlook. There were other things that I did like and/or agree with. Relying upon the kindness of strangers when on the road, for example. Certainly I've experienced that and it's something that's stayed with me.

There did seem to be some interesting and helpful advice (certainly she had interesting and helpful things to say) and I think I'll go check the book out in the bookstore. Much of the information might be more for my sister than me, I think. I've got a job to worry about and can't really go travelling. I'm sure I could if I wanted to live a nomadic life of sorts but I'm too much of a homebody for that.

No comments: