To Have Done

I don’t particularly want to climb Mt Everest but I would quite like to have done it.

I think many people would rather have done something than actually do it. Or perhaps it’s more true that people would like to be seen as having done something.

This was obvious in Paris when we visited the Louvre and went to see the Mona Lisa. Apparently lots of people want to see the Mona Lisa because it’s difficult to get anywhere near it. There are so many people taking photos of it.

Mona Lisa

The Mona Lisa is the tiny picture at the end of the room

But you can’t really see the Mona Lisa. Sure, it’s there, and you can see it from a distance, but you can’t examine it, get close to it. Really all you can get is the experience of having been in the same room as the Mona Lisa. Which I suspect is all that most people want. We want the status of being able to say “I’ve seen the Mona Lisa”.

Mona Lisa 2

Proof that you’ve seen the Mona Lisa

It becomes obvious that visual proof is the important thing when you see the busloads of tourists who spend a few minutes in front of famous tourist attractions taking selfies or getting photos taken of themselves, before getting back on the bus and going to the next attraction.

One comment

  1. Leslie

    Alec, Ha! I’m in St Pancreas station, London, as I read this, waiting for the Eurostar to zip me to Paris and the Louvre. Your pictures are disheartening as to the experience That awaits me. But at least I will be able to say I’ve seen the Mona Lisa! I’ll be sure to take a selfie too! Love your blog! 🙂

    Like

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