Saturday, March 04, 2006

Resort vacations - an exercise in communist utopianism

On Thursday night my friend and I returned from a fabulous week in Punta Cana. Looking back on it, the resort exceeded all of our expectations. For instance, we'd heard horror stories about the quality of the food. The food, however, was decent and varied. In fact, I ate the best goat of my life at the resort. The people at the resort were also a pleasant surprise - not the obnoxious tourists I feared.

The most fascinating aspect of the vacation, however, was the communist nature of the resort experience. And no, I'm not crazy.

See, when you arrive at an all-inclusive resort you're given a bracelet. This allows you to eat and drink as much as you want. The cost of your stay is between you and the hotel - different people pay different amounts based on the sort of deal they get, and once you're at the resort you're on equal footing with everyone else.

Moreoever, you don't have to use money. You go to eat without your wallet. You get drinks without needing your wallet. Everyone, no matter what their socio-economic background, is equal once they get the bracelet. This makes the overall experience much more pleasant. Whoever you are back home, whatever you do - this doesn't matter anymore. Here, you're the equal of everyone else.

Of course, this communist utopia is set in a colonialist milieu, with locals serving, cleaning, and catering to the whims of the bracelet-toting tourists for the paltry sum of $180/month.

Nevertheless, despite the colonialist backdrop, after the unstated but ever-present classism of the law school, this vacation was a much needed breath of fresh air, reminding me that intelligence has absolutely nothing to do with income or type of employment.


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