Thursday, January 19, 2012

The love boat?

The stricken cruise ship Costa Concordia reminds me of my first cruise that took place more than 40 years ago, sailing out of Genoa, Italy to Melbourne, Australia via Durban, South Africa. The whole adventure was in second class, on an Italian liner in which the crew decided to go on strike three days in everyone of our nine ports of call.

The ship was big, looked safe and while the mostly Italian crew was colorful and quite Italian we made it safely to our destination. We practiced a safety drill more than 20 days into the voyage, but that was okay as nothing bad happened to us. Would I ever do a cruise today? Perhaps to peek at some Alaskan glaciers, but otherwise, absolutely not.

I'm repulsed by this modern form mass-tourism, all you can eat mentality and the fact that these cruise lines that not only evade taxes, also exploit cheap and untrained labor from all the struggling world nations. A form of imperialism at its worst.

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