I’ve written about a lot of things in my journalist avatar: bagpipe players, delusional cross-dressing troubadours, midgets, aside from the stuff that no one really cares about like cultural blah blah blah. Travel-writing, however, is not something of which I can boast. I’ve written one article about going on a boat ride in the backwaters of Kerala and a paragraph about Istanbul. Which is why I was somewhat taken aback when I got this email today:
Greetings from K V Tours and Travel`A WARM THANK YOU FOR YOUR COOPERATION AND SUPPORT IN MAKING “DIVORCE TOURISM AND SURE CURE MEDICAL TOURISM” A SUCCESS. K V TEAM ARE LAUNCHING A CHRISTIAN HOLY PILGRIM TOUR FOR THE CHRISTIAN COMMUNITY
Introducing the HOLY BIBLE TRAIL a pilgrim tour which will take you to the Land of BIBLE which will bring the pages of the bible alive to you!
I HAVE ATTACHED A DETAILED PRESS RELEASE ABOUT THE SAME
Should the information shared be of interest to you and your readers, we will be delighted to see it published in your esteemed publication. For any further assistance We are only a call away.
Never mind that I don’t have a publication to my name any more, esteemed or otherwise. The question of whether or not I belong to the Christian community is also irrelevant as is the point that the idea of a Bible trail isn’t exactly novel, given how long Christian pilgrims have been going to the Holy Land. My question is, what the hell is “divorce tourism” and how have I cooperated and supported something that I’ve never heard of before?
Apparently, if the Daily Mail is to be believed (and why would anyone mistrust that esteemed publication?), this business of divorce tourism is an Indian creation. A couple that is heading for divorce should, according to K.V. Tours’ Vijesh Thakker, go on holiday with a tour guide who is actually a marriage counsellor. As the travel agency’s website says:
If the sizzle has fizzled out in your relationship, it’s time to plan an exotic romantic vacation.
The solution to marital woe could be a seven or ten-day holiday to a hill station or an island in the South Pacific, inhabited by few and without the presence of any relatives. One of the divorce destinations is Vanatu. This is how reconciliations come about:
Sipping a cocktail while watching a tropical sunset, bathing in tepid clear waters, or just lazing by the pool, could be just the therapy needed, after a couple of sessions with the counselor.
So Vanatu is the Xanadu for the unhappily married.
Wow. Divorcees, now you know.
Incidentally, I’ve never written about medical tourism either. But I do know a guy from Illinois who had a business plan to bring people from America to India for medical procedures. He was at a party in Bandra where someone from a modelling agency asked him if he was interested in trying out for an underwear ad. Mr. Illinois didn’t take up the offer and went to Harvard Business School soon after. He is, at present, happily married.