Mike, I’m only calling it the way I see it. You’ve GOT to go to Paris. Parisians get a bad rap as being rude. They’re not at all. It’s that they have a certain way of doing things, same as we do here. Heree’s the two things I tell anyone going to Paris for the first time —

  1. Learn a couple of French words and phrases. No matter how bad you are at actually speaking French, as long as you put forth the effort they’ll more than meet you halfway. Same as here. When people from other countries visit here, we tend to slide them a little more slack if they at least try to speak the language.
  2. The other thing has to do with French service. In the States, we’ll cut in on anyone because “our” so called emergency supercedes anyone else’s so called emergency. In Paris, things don’t work that way. The pace is slower. When a salesperson is attending to the needs of a customer, that person has their full attention for as long as it takes. And when it’s the next customer’s turn, it’s their turn to have the salesperson’s full attention. I found it was like that everywhere. Everyone understands that. The one thing you don’t want to be is the rude American. I saw a woman from New England do that and I wanted to disappear.

Sapporo, Kyoto, Shanghai, and Guangzhou sound like thrilling places! I’m a bit intimidated by Asia as I have no frame of reference for it, no understanding of the history, language, or culture; and would be l-o-s-t from the minute the plane landed.

You hit the nail on the head about driving across America. It was the most amazing experience. It was wild watching the landscape change from Florida’s lush green to marshy Louisianna to big, broad Texas to the desert and so on. And those abandoned towns were something else.

Probably one of my most memorable experiences was crossing the California state line along the 10. That ornate toll plaza followed by those rolling hills of wind turbines told me I definitely wasn’t in Florida anymore! Ha! And yes, the Grand Canyon is tops on the list.

It’d be great to do again sometime, but I don’t see that happening again in the near future.

Hey, thanks for your time and comments. If you get some time, you should put together a list.

Author, artist, accidental activist, founder Our Human Family (http://medium.com/our-human-family). Social media: @clayrivers. Love one another.

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