Cool Things About America #1

I’ve been enjoying my home country for the past month. Gorging in way too much food and freezing my tail off in this supposed “summer” weather. Why they even bother to sell swimwear in the frigid regions of the northeast I’ll never know. It’s mid-July and it was only 57 degrees in Friendship, NY at noon yesterday!

Oh wait. This is a post about cool things in America. (Oh, I just see the pun I made. But I shall ignore and move on.)

America has its faults. The whole world knows that, but there really are some really amazing and simple things about American life that I’ve enjoyed being reminded of this summer. Here’s the first one.

2015-07-07 13.18.09

 

Okay, it doesn’t look like much. In fact it looks like nothing, and that is precisely the point. Empty parking lots! Free parking lots! They are everywhere!

What a contrast to my normal home in Asia and the other place I vacationed this summer. First, living on an island in Asia can be a nightmare to park. The spaces are tight, the traffic is all around at all moments. Malls have garages where you have to pay. There is no free parking.

And what about Europe? In our little town in Germany, the apartment I stayed at had no parking at all. I had to park way up on the hill and go on a morning hike just to pick up the care. In Belgium, it was a garage, and in Haarlem, Netherlands it was an EXPENSIVE garage. A day and a half of parking came to around 60 Euros!

But America, wow! Plentiful and free. Go to any mall, even a big crowded one like Palisades Park in Nyack, NY and there is OODLES of free parking, sprawling out in all directions. We visited a hospital, retirement home, super market, minor league ball game – FREE – FREE – FREE! Of course, there are spots in America where you have to pay for parking, especially in the big cities, but for the most part, parking is plentiful, free, and cheap.

Thank you, America.

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