In regard to Leon Logothetis' "Places Overrated," Dec. 7: Sir Gripesalot is in the wrong business. He is not a traveler but a tourist who believes that the world revolves around him. Being open to the residents of a place and accepting them as they are is the essence of travel.
Judith Keith Yamada
I am surprised that author Leon Logothetis is a Londoner. He has more in common with us ugly Americans than he realizes.
So Paris is Logothetis' least favorite city because the people are so unfriendly?
After decades of visiting Paris and the countryside of France, we can cite only one incident of a slightly grumpy merchant selling souvenirs -- and everyone is entitled to a bad day. Other than that, we've been treated politely. We believe it's because we don't expect Parisians to cater to us.
I enjoyed "Overrated" immensely and share some of your experiences.
As a cold crowd goes, I will substitute your Paris with New York City. It's the most uncompassionate place I've ever been.
My wife and I laughed out loud while reading this article. We were in Paris two summers ago and were surprised to find ourselves so unimpressed. We visited the cemetery where Jim Morrison is buried . That's about all we enjoyed about Paris.
The article about Athens doesn't explain the reality of how wonderful Athens can be. To get the best out of Athens, you need to mix with an Athenian. Then you shall see a part of Greek culture that one cannot explain.
Admittedly, Athens appears disorganized, but everything somehow works.
As to our taxis, yes indeed, every trip is an experience, but at least you get to talk to somebody and have an emotional discussion about life, unlike London or New York where you locked up in a cage. Athens has emotional momentum and a progressive dynamism.
It's not only the beauty of a city or the antiquities that makes Athens a unique city. It's the local people. So mix with the locals. They love tourists and travelers like you.
Editor's note: The letter writer is the author's father.