Years ago, when Merle and I published a quarterly magazine, we invited a guy we knew to write an article titled, “Should I Travel When the World Is Starving?”
He was thoughtful and a good writer—and he ran a travel business. But we knew he’d hit the topic head-on. We figured it would interest our readers, but we wanted to know personally what he would say. I get tormented by these kinds of things. When you’re paying attention to all the trouble in the world, you gotta wonder if it’s okay to enjoy small pleasures.
I was struck by what Ruth Reichl (former editor of Gourmet magazine and restaurant critic, and a food writer) said when she happened to write about the glories of good food one morning in March, before realizing that an unimaginable earthquake had hit Japan earlier that day. Click here to read the article.
So what do you think?
Our friend who wrote about traveling while people are starving grew up on a farm. He remembered being told by his parents to go with his sister to bring the grazing cows into the barn to be milked. The two kids, short and unable to see far, would climb a tower on their farm where they could get a fuller view of the meadows and find the cows before trying to bring them home.
Traveling could offer that broader view, he believed, and could make anyone who does it more sensitive and more grateful.
Seems to me that good food can quiet us down, raise our spirits, and make us ever thankful. And what’s wrong with that?