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Michael Mon Oct 18 02:30:40 2004
Expanding horizons

"For a Westerner to trash Western culture is like criticizing our nitrogen/oxygen atmosphere on the grounds that it sometimes gets windy, and besides, Jupiter’s is much prettier. You may not realize its advantages until you’re trying to breathe liquid methane." (Neal Stephenson)

Puerto Rico isn't -- quite -- the third world. Everybody here is a bona fide US citizen, many of them have lived and worked in the States and come home to the island they love, and everybody, bar none, has family Up There. So living here must perforce be nothing at all like living in, say, Viet Nam or Thailand.

Until moving here, I thought my more-or-less annual jaunts to Hungary and other places in Europe qualified me as a world traveller. But at times, this place is foreign in a way that Europe simply isn't.

I'm hardly here, of course. I work online and the kids are homeschooling and there are days I realize as the sun is setting over my rooftop terrace that I didn't even go downstairs the entire day. But we're slowly meeting people, talking to people, and it does soak in over time.

Just a poorly-formed thought after a long day of translation and not enough sleep. I'm going to bed now.

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