Thursday, October 11, 2012


As I keep traveling, I get increasingly suspicious of the world “historic”.

Here is the Historic town of Truckee, for a while the closest you can get from Lake Tahoe by train.

There’s actually a map at the train station detailing the history of each building. But you go on and read things like “House of Doyle McGwinn build in 1895, who grew up to be the town butcher for many years.” Then you go to the house of the butcher and find that it has new interiors to allow for electricity and plumbing.

History is just a show featured for the present. And tourism is a hype of locality to sell souvenirs made in China. To make an analogy between society and the individual, History is like nostalgia, and tourism is like scar bragging. The reminiscence is more a reflection of current concerns, and the scars have nothing of the original injury but the pattern.

But one thing has been kept alive as it was in the old days: there is nothing to do. Business close short after lunch and the only crowd are tourists wandering around for a cup of coffee. 

There was one fascinating thing, though. Uphill, a glacier made a huge rock laid on another in such a position that it will balance with the touch of a finger. Well, that was the case until somebody pushed so hard that it actually made the rock sit still, so it doesn’t move anymore. So the only interesting thing in town was set to be quiet and boring as the rest.

I’m writing this to save you gas. Go to Tahoe but skip Truckee. And explain your travel partners the myth of history and the deception of tourism to support your omission.

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