The dangers of travel writing to the self  MAY 14 2010

David Farley wrote a travel article for the New York Times about the eccentric small town of Calcata, Italy. When he went back, he found that the article had changed the character of the town for him.

The problem went beyond some of the local artists' anger about not making it into the article. Some were angry that I included their arch-enemies. Others were angry that they were in it but not quoted. I had once loved living in Calcata, a fortress town where dinner parties on the square would often erupt in singing and joint smoking; where you could walk 50 feet and eat at an amazing restaurant; where you could make the intimate square your living room. But now, after the article came out, I felt like a persona non grata for at least half of the place. I hated that I was hated.

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