Come One Tourist, Come All?

Reporting live from Colorado Springs, Colorado. It’s beautiful here, although not what I expected at all. I’ve never been here before and I suppose had some sort of pre-notion as to the aesthetics, the people, and the accommodations. Neither good nor bad, just something I had created in my head. Either way, it’s beautiful and as I sit on my patio there’s a massive and beautiful mountain saying “come climb me!” but alas I am working. Yesterday I arrived to about ten deer taking a mid-afternoon snack right at my door, and the people are friendly, casual, and for the most part welcoming.

Although this is certainly not an entirely tourist town (as we passed by quite a few subdivisions, elementary schools, etc.), most of where we are consists of ski lodges and resorts. DC is not nearly as welcoming to it’s tourists, and I’m the first in violation of that secretly thinking obscenities (I just can’t bring myself to do the actually yelling them thing) at Mr. Cross In The Middle Of The Street During Rush Hour With My Family Of Six While Pointing Out Landmarks. Or the occasionally Ms. Stand Clear Of The Metro Doors Means Your Backpack Too, while I roll my eyes, or kill myself trying not to.

This all said, I’m not nearly as friendly – and I think most of us aren’t. Someone said to me recently, while in the midst of a conversation about a similar topic, that DC produces nothing physical in the way of products and is one of the few major cities that doesn’t. You can laws and policy, yes, but it’s still different. Should we respect tourists more especially because they are our “product,” more or less? Colorado Springs has been a great example – people ask where you’re from, what you’re doing here. If I really want tourists to continue to bring revenue to DC, I can do my part and show the same attitude – it makes me feel welcome here, and like I’d consider coming back on personal time.

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