Home is Where we Hook-up

January 4, 2008

All the Warnings

Filed under: Travel — Heligypsy @ 7:54 am

Some of the next sentiments might not be very popular among some of our readers here, but nonetheless it is what I have come to learn by my own experiences.

A very general statement here, of course, there are exceptions:

Americans are afraid to travel outside America.

How can I say this? I’m not talking about jumping on board a cruise ship, or hopping an international flight and being shuttled to the nearest resort. Certainly there is plenty of that going on. But, we don’t travel like that, and we just don’t run into too many Americans. Mostly we find ourselves among Canadians, Australians, Germans too, and some French (although they mostly socialize with other French…so they can tend to go unnoticed).

On the third day of our trip, we swung into a rock-shop on the edges of New Mexico to see what we could find out about the value of some Anabergite Keith had bought while in Greece. I browsed the shop, listening to the guy who’d walked in just steps ahead of us lament to the old gal who owned the place that he was just “killen time until my divorce papers are done. It’s gonna be an HOUR!”

As the four of us began looking over the specimens Keith has collected, the fact that we were driving through Mexico came up.

“Good Luck!” Each of them exclaimed simultaneously, the soon to be divorced guy snorted his sentiment.

I retorted, possibly a little snippy “Luck? What does luck have to do with it? Do you mean in regards to being safe?” Two heads nod, and I continued “Don’t you think that has more to do with being careful, aware and respectful than it does with luck?”

The old gal, mascara smeared deep in the creases of the wrinkles under her eyes slowly agreed that luck would have little to do with our safety – divorcee had nothing to say.

As we prepared for this journey we did meet several travelers who’d made a similar journey – even my American Vet who’d helped prepare Zoe’s paperwork was supportive of the upcoming drive and offered his own sightseeing suggestions. My mom’s bridge partner had traveled the Pan-American Highway as a young woman, long before I was even thought of – I looked forward to the chance to visit with her about it, and still hope we get to meet and compare notes. When it was warnings from strangers that we encountered, I took to asking “Oh, so you’ve done the trip?” You might guess what the answer would be…”No” followed by a third party horror story they’d read or been told. Its tiresome.

Its not so scary out here in the big bad world as people seem to believe. Foreigners might hate our President, but they rarely hate us as individuals – and they LOVE our money.


1 Comment »

  1. I agree with you 100%, Americans are afraid to travel beyond the U.S. borders, I even think they’re afraid to travel to Canada!

    From what I’ve experienced, you’re right too about people not liking our President or policy but when we’re respectful travelers, they’re welcoming. When traveling, I have the philosophy that I’m a guest in another person’s country and try to be respectful as possible.

    Comment by JennH — January 9, 2008 @ 7:53 pm | Reply

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