I generally try not to respond to “Reader’s Opinions.” All opinions are of value, even those I disagree with.

In this case, I must write to agree with Cidalia Thibault’s July 10 letter regarding the overuse of the words “amazing” and “awesome.”

Such words indeed belittle her experience in the study of a culture other than her own, given those words’ cheap application today.

As of late, I have noticed people overly impressed with “reality” shows, sports trivia, celebrity antics, consumer-oriented gimmicks, auto races (which I do not consider a sport) and other mundane phenomena. Though such events might be of interest to some (but not all) people, they are certainly not amazing or even awesome.

Since I can assume that Thibault and her husband spent some time reading about Connecticut native Hiram Bingham III and other authors of books about the successful Inca culture, much older and longer-lasting than ours, it is apparent that they were not seeking cheap thrills. Certainly they were searching for some universal truth about how we can survive as a species: Thirst to understand those who are different from us, yet with many similarities.

As a youth, I served with the Scandinavian merchant marine working with sailors from all parts of the world. I learned much about many cultures from working and living among them. I feel that I do somewhat understand the thirst for knowledge that Thibault and her husband have.

I can think of one word that might accurately describe and give just credit to the Thibaults’ trip to Peru. A word that definitely does not apply to any of the mundane activities mentioned above. That word is “enlightening”

Peter P. Sirois
Madison

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