KEN WOLSON chastises me for my critical remarks last week about American tourists. 'What purpose does this serve, other than to perpetuate a disgust and intolerance for foreigners?' he asks.

Keith Harrison of Sheffield, however, remembers a holiday in Switzerland when he took the little train that travels from Grutschalp to Murren past the Eiger- Monch-Jungfrau panorama to be seen across the Lauterbrunnen valley.

'Everyone on the train began quietly drinking in the vista until the peace was shattered by a loudly dressed couple festooned with cameras etc. 'We just flew into Geneva this morning,' announced the woman. 'What's everyone looking at?'

'Wishing to be helpful, while wondering at the sheer redundancy of the question,

I named the mountains to her. 'The Eiger? Gee] Is that famous?'

'I am sure that delightful, civilised and knowledgeable Americans do travel abroad, but why do the ones we meet always conform exactly to the most extreme caricature types that can be imagined?'