The main street in Waikiki is known more for its shops than for its obscured view of the beach and ocean. Japanese tourists have long been the mainstay of the economy as they flit in their stilettos from Chanel and Tiffany to Gucci and Yves Saint Laurent, carrying bags of luxury along the sidewalk. According to author Dave Sedaris, Japan is his preferred place to shop. In Tokyo, shopping is not an art – it’s a sport.
In the New York Times travel section, “In Transit,” Nell McShane Wulfhart interviews David Sedaris for a list of places to stay (the Four Seasons Biltmore in Santa Barbara – “everyone there looks like Mitt and Ann Romney”) to his dream trip (to India – “I want to go to India for three hours. So I can leave when I get thirsty, and then I can get back on the plane without any risk of getting a stomach bug.”). But his favorite travel activity is shopping; forget the monuments and art.
As a seasoned traveler, Sedaris offers a list of must-haves for every trip, including:
- Vicks VapoRub (Use on your upper lip to diffuse cloying perfume of fellow travelers.)
- An extendable backscratcher (to relieve the itchiness brought on by dry air in planes).
- A wooden hanger that folds in half to dry shirts (because “in a crummy hotel you can’t disconnect the hangers.”)
- Set Editions’ Stop Talking Cards (useful to give at appropriate times).
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