Saturday, June 30, 2012


We returned from a week in Tennessee to a house void of food. Isn't that always the way things work out? Go out of town for a while and come home to moldy cheese and a half empty tub of peanut butter. Since we will be in town for a few days before heading back out of town for middle school summer camp, we NEEDED to get some groceries. Makes sense right?

But here is where we went terribly wrong: hitting the only local grocery store (unless you also count Walmart) at noon on the Saturday before July 4th. We should've known it was a mistake when we drove into an almost completely full parking lot. We got inside the store to see dozens of carts filled with chips and dip, sodas, booze, funnoodles, and coffee cake. 

Yes friends, the tourists are in full force.

It's been an interesting few years for Jordan and myself, living in a town that thrives on tourism. Sure Augusta is tourist heavy for 1 week of the year, but between the snow birds that invade Rockport from October to March and the families/college kids that come from Spring break to labor day, we're pretty much a year-round tourist destination. (Snow birds will insist that they are NOT tourists. They also prefer the term "Winter Texans." But we just let them keep believing what they want to believe.) The touristas are pretty easy to spot, whether on the road, in the restaurant, or at the store. So as a service to anyone doing any traveling this summer, I've compiled a list of "tourist donts"for your reading pleasure.


1. Please. PLEASE. Don't wear your bathing suit outside of the beach/pool. Obviously within the confines of your rent house/condo/hotel room is acceptable as well. But for real, nobody (and I mean NObody) wants to see you in a swimsuit at Walmart. Or Walgreens. Or Chili's. Put on some shoes and a coverup at least! I've gone to eat at nice restaurants here in Rockport and been seated next to folks who are still in their sopping wet bathing suit. I was unlucky enough to see a "don't #1" offender today at the grocery store... swimsuit (no coverup) and pool shoes.  Seriously- someone still makes pool shoes? Anyway, the part that really had me scratching my head in confusion is the fact that today it rained ALL DAY LONG. There was no pool/beach time to be had unless you wanted to brave the rain and occasional thunder & lightning. But that didn't stop this lady from wearing her beach gear in public.

It's just gross. Don't do it.

2. Speaking of restaurants, remember that just because you're out of town it doesn't mean that you can throw away all common decency. This means children should still be somewhat contained and not allowed to run wild. This means you should save being loud, drunk, and obnoxious for the confines of your rent house/condo/hotel room. This means that your waiter or waitress would still like a tip (heard dozens of complaints about tourists being notoriously bad tippers!).

Simply remembering that you aren't alone on an island (even if you so happen to be on an island) might conjure up feelings of responsibility and spur on appropriate behavior.

3. Speaking of debauchery and loudness (and since July 4th is just around the corner), remember when you get the urge to shoot off some fireworks at 1:30am that there are full time residents of Rockport next door who have to work tomorrow. Someone's got to restock the styrofoam cooler aisle at Walmart.

Shooting off fireworks at 1:30am on July 4? Marginally acceptable.

Shooting off fireworks at 1:30 am on June 30??? Just plain rude.

4. Between the beaches and the birds, Rockport can be pretty scenic. But please don't block up the road driving <12mph with a camera hanging out the window taking blurry moving photos of the waves or a pelican.

5. And for the love of all things lovely, don't feed the seagulls. 

1 comment:

Jill said...

this made me laugh. but as a potential tourist, can i wear a neon fanny pack? how do you feel about that?

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