Tourism – a love/hate story

I live in a tourist town. 100% no denying it.  Tourism is what fuels much of our economy and helps keep this province afloat.  I mean, we have a very successful exporting market open the world, as well as a thriving Aerospace industry along with several others, BUT tourism has been the backbone, in my opinion.

Each year, hundreds of thousands of tourists from all over the world descend upon our tiny island and massive cruise ships continue to grace our harbour each year well in to the fall.  Every single one of these tourists are spending money in shops, campgrounds, hotels, restaurants, festivals and shows, all owned by local islanders making a life for themselves here.

I have all kinds of love…

But you know what grinds my gears? And before you say anything or shake your head at me for being a curmudgeonly old fart, I already know that I can’t have one without the other and the other far outweighs the one so shut your pie hole and leave me alone to bitch…

Anyways, you know what drives me to the absolute brink of insanity? Tourists! They’re everywhere.  They walk around like they’ve never seen the place before (I suppose they haven’t, but still) all “oohs and ahhs” with their mouths wide open looking at everything taking out their giant iPads to take a photo (whaaattt??) Then taking up the whole side walk to stroll at a glacial pace down the main thorough-ways, and then waffling about on the street corners.  Are they crossing the road? Which way are they going? Should I wait before driving through? Or should I just go?  So they don’t do anything for an extended period of time while they deliberate and traffic is building behind you and people are getting angry and honking because you’re holding it all up so you decide the tourist has no idea what they’re doing and you just go for it and BAM… they step off the side walk right in front of you and you’re now officially stuck in the middle of a four-way intersection holding traffic back from ALL directions and no one can go and wait….HOLY FUCK, are the pedestrians stopping in the middle of the crosswalk because they’re unsure they took the right route?  Yes, yes they are.

By the time they’ve figured out what direction they want to go in, 10 more tourists have joined the hullabaloo and are doing the exact same thing in all directions thus forcing you to gingerly maneuver your way though a sea of waffling pedestrian tourists with your car and dear Gawd all-mighty, you just want to get to home after a long day.  Forget parking, that’s just not going to happen.

So what’s the answer here? Do NOT leave your office during the day unless you have absolutely have to. ie.. life or death.  For your own safety, stay indoors.  Do not attempt to walk down the street for anything.  Drink the office coffee, just suck it up princess, it’s going to taste bad but it’s still better than the rage that comes from trying to walk to the coffee shop among, not one or two cruise ships docked in the harbour today, but FOUR! Yes, that’s right, there is currently FOUR giant cruise ships docked in the harbour and ALL of those people have come to shore on a beautiful fall day in PEI.  Bless them for the dollars they’ll spend, and the happy memories they’ll make and they’re appreciation of our sweet tiny island but I’m just going to sit tight and wait it out.