|Mmm, pen sketches|
|How is this helpful? Left at oval!|
|The hair! The hair! Why was this ever acceptable?|
We went to Paris two years ago. The book I used then was spectacular (someday I'll remember the publisher). Great organization, clear descriptions, and concise historical information. In service of making your trip better it gave an overview of things Americans do that make French people think we're boorish morons. Chief actions listed included speaking in an outdoor voices on trains, in restaurants, museums, EVERYWHERE. Not even trying to speak the language--apparently even a horrific mangling of French is preferable to an arrogant torrent of English. The most random one to me was not greeting people when entering stores (it's like entering someone's home and ignoring them). I would have totally done that one.
The book basically says you have a better shot at people being polite to you if you pay two seconds of attention to their cultural norms of politeness. If they still hate you 'cause you're a tourist, then at least you don't look a damn fool. Which is the title of my new book: "How not to look a damn fool in country XXX, by Ish." Watch your back "Dummies" series. I'm coming for you!
[Visit Save Oakland Library. The City is threatening to close 99% of them. We really do need to save them.]