Agreeing With The 24 Americans about Europe (mostly)

by farrah on May 27, 2016 · 0 comments

Today I was sitting in my living room waiting to leave and pick up the boys from school when I saw one of those click bait ‘articles’ about what a bunch of people think about another bunch people. I thought- ‘Oh great. What idiocy will I read here, while being annoyed by the pop up ads?’ Well, I learned that while I was correct about the obnoxiousness of the website- the responses rang true for most (if not all of these). If you’re curious as to if Europe (and I realize I’m generalizing here) really IS like this- here’s what I think after living and traveling all over it since 2012.

The original post can be found here.

Roofs of Graz #2

`1. The nude billboard. TRUE. I have seen several billboards even in my very own Oisterwijk that have raised my eyebrow. From a sex-play, to a lingerie shop in town I have definitely seen a more risqué side of advertising than I did back in the States.

2. Alcohol in places you wouldn’t expect. ABSOLUTELY. For example, at our SCHOOL there is an attached community center (mind you the building is small) and it has beer on tap. Additionally there’s a bar at the biggest health club in town.

3. French being generally nice and Parisians being rude. In my experience, TRUE. We’ve been to many different parts of France over the years- and the city I like least is Paris. The region where I felt people were generally the most kind was Normandy, and the place they were seemingly the most laid back was in Dordogne.

4. The body size. TRUE. I’ve only been back to the States a time or two and I can tell you 100% that overall, Americans are by far  larger than the majority of Europeans, although my Dutch friends will say that they are getting heavier than ever. Clearly their biking and walking habits are a huge factor- not to mention the quality of food and lack of a fast food restaurant every 5 feet.

5. Freebies (refills, bathrooms, ketchup, etc). SO TRUE. There is no giant tumbler where you fill it with ice and can refill your Coke as many times with 100 different flavor addition options. There are no ketchup bottles on the table (you pay for extra, even at McD’s) and you pay to use bathrooms in a lot of places. Generally speaking, those bathrooms are cleaner (at rest stops) and you don’t feel like you need to wear a hazmat suit just to visit one.

6. Quite cities. I don’t know what this person is talking about. Because in any weather, year round we hear people coming home from a night out quite loudly, and every city we’ve been to has its own sound.

7. Walking everywhere (in Germany). Yes, you can. If you live in a self-sustained village or small city- you can and do walk everywhere!

8. Walking is easier. Yep. And cheaper. You have to pay to park near a center and there is no giant lot where you can park wherever you want.

9. The smoking. Yes- I think it’s starting to decrease a little ? at least here in the NL- but by American standards the smoking here is INSANE.

10. No one talking to this poor person. That’s their experience. I find people talk to us all the time- and if they don’t my chatterbox 7-year-old will strike up a conversation with them.

11. Spain and the siesta time. Yeah, this is a but funny. I thought I read somewhere though that they wanted to do away with the siesta?

12. THIS ONE

Remnants of the two world wars are everywhere. You can actually see lines across many of the buildings where they used new brick and mortar to rebuild after Hitler blitzkrieg’d them to shit. Many of the towns I visited in Germany and Czech Republic still had anti-tank hedgehogs sticking out all around the borders or along main roads. The locals said they figured it was more of a pain to dig them all out, so they just left them as a daily reminder of the cost of war. Fascinating to me.

I agree 100%.

13. Sense of history and age of cities and towns. YEP. It puts the youth of America’s ‘old cities’ to shame. Oisterwijk just celebrated its 803rd birthday! 

14. Walking into the street and expecting cars to stop. In some places- yes. Not so in the NL (at least in my opinion). I think I remember it being more common in Germany, and Italy for sure.

15. Brits not considering themselves part of Europe. I can’t say from a personal perspective- but in my mine, the UK isn’t really Europe. It’s its own thing.

16. Beer vending machines. Of course! What’s weird about that?

17. Education system. I can’t comment on the university level- but overall I am very impressed with their systems in general.

18. People sharing tables like at a McD’s. I have seen this- would this not happen in the US? I like to think that it would.

19. Skinny and well dressed people in Germany. I have already talked about the weight thing- but well- dressed I do believe is true. Most of the time it seems that shoes and glasses make a HUGE statement of style. Not so much with the handbags- but shoes are huge. Just think as to how many shoe stores (and not chains!) you see. Plus, the cost is MUCH more than in the States.

20. Slow-down sense. Yes, I do agree. No one seems to be in a ‘hurry’. To-go coffee is not the norm, and I have yet to see a drive- through coffee place. I’m sure they’re somewhere, but in all of the countries I have been to- I have not seen one. You enjoy your coffee. You don’t slam it down like you’re doing shots.

21. Time in restaurants. Well, this has a couple of sides to it. Yes, dinners in a restaurant can drag on for hours- there aren’t the ‘casual dining’ chains where servers need to flip their tables. You don’t tip- so generally the attention you receive is less than in the States. This is great for some, irritating for others. As long as you don’t plan to ‘catch a quick dinner’ before later plans, you’re fine.

22. Paying for public bathrooms. I’ve already addressed this issue. Hey, I don’t mind paying .50 or .75 if the seat is sanitized by opening the door to my stall. Additionally, in gas stations and rest areas you can use the coupon you get after you pay towards a purchase.

23. Expensive soda/pop. Yes, it is- it also tastes more sugary and less carbonated. But because it’s so much sweeter, I’ve managed to eliminate my ‘coke-a-day’ habit.

24. Amount of ketchup this person used. I have never been ridiculed like this guy- but then again, I don’t dump ketchup on my plate.

Credit to the following redditors for their initial observations (IN ORDER OF APPEARANCE ABOVE):

KnodiferousMarinertheRaccoonpersistentlyimmaturepersistentlyimmature,

OburcukFLYBOY611Coredogcarrindafart_force_fieldrusty_holepepg,

jp_jellyrolle36IAmAn_Assassinabr0414savoytruffleDannyMarble,

 lispychickeneskimopie26Jules_You_Drink, anon person,

SnugglyBoofSnugglyBoof, epsom.

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