a consummate ass

Illustration from first edition of  Following the EquatorColor tinted by Kent Rasmussen © 2004

Mark Twain's stories and memoirs communicated the world which he saw with his own eyes; opportunities for travel which weren't available for the masses at the time. In his lifetime Twain traveled across the U.S.--from Missouri, where he was born--from New York to California, even visiting Hawaii (then called the Sandwich Islands); he made tours of Europe, the Middle East and Mediterranean. And these travels were communicated into The Adventures of Tom Sawyer; The Adventures of Huck Finn; Roughing It; The Innocents Abroad.
It was while I was reading about travel today, that I thought of Twain and wanted to share some of his quotes on the subject:

"The gentle reader will never, never know what a consummate ass he can become until he goes abroad."
~ Innocents Abroad

"There is no unhappiness like the misery of sighting land (and work) again after a cheerful, careless voyage."~ Letter to Will Bowen

"It liberates the vandal to travel--you never saw a bigoted, opinionated, stubborn, narrow-minded, self-conceited, almighty mean man in your life but he had stuck in one place since he was born and thought God made the world and dyspepsia and bile for his especial comfort and satisfaction."
~ The American Abroad speech, 1868


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