It’s A Sale!

January 10, 2013 11:53, somewhere near Jamaica and Hispanola

Today on the ship, we are simply sailing north toward Florida, where cold weather awaits. I dislike cold weather and instead crave sun, sand, and waves.  I still do not understand why my ancestors stopped in Arkansas when they had every opportunity to proceed across the country or even south, so that I would have been born on a beach. Literally.

Yesterday, our you guide told us something we found etc be very true and still believe to be true. He said that the people of Aruba are mostly middle class, with those who have swimming pools seen ad high class. This is, obviously different than the United States, where people can live in w nice house in a nice neighborhood, not mow their yard or rake their leaves, causing their neighbor’s property value to drop $12,000 I three year’s time. Ask me how I know. First hand.

The you guide also said that the people in Aruba who choose to live in scrappy houses or are homeless choose to be that way. There are always jobs available, and the tourism industry is always in need of qualified or even unqualified staff. I know that the US is different, but I truly do believe that there are many people who choose to be unemployed and simply live off the system. They expect a handout, and unfortunately for those of us who did go to college or grad school, we end up not only paying for school on our own (because we made good choices and don’t qualify for free everything), but we end up paying for those who make bad choices as well, be it that we pay for their school, their healthcare, or whatever. I wish more countries had the opinion of Alfred, our you guide, as the word would be a much better place if people were trip responsible for themselves instead of living off the public dole.

The title of this blog entry relates to how people behave when they are in s crowded place, and how different nationalities behave in the same situation. The ship had a cool sale today, including clothing, jewelry, toys, and general souvenirs.  We went, and we purchased several items. I even bought three pairs of gloves for the cold weather I will most certainly face in a few days. 😦

In the crowded space where they held the sale, it was very interesting to notice the differences between the nationalities interacting with one another. For the most part, the Americans seemed to have an innate “order” on their heads to which they expected all the others to follow. No breaking in line, no getting too close to someone’s personal space, and certainly no grabbing stuff out from under someone’s hand. The Europeans seemed to be close to that, although it was readily apparent that they, for the most part, were more used to crowded spaces. Even though there are quite a bunch of folks on this ship from the northeastern US, they still don’t have the same types of crowds that one would see in Europe.

The folks from the Asian countries, very accustomed to large crowds, were less inclined to worry about whether they were moving about in front of others or such. They seemed to know that they wanted to look at the merchandise and didn’t have the same sense of urgency shown by some of the others.  This was simply an observation, and not meant to be a true generalization at all. It was just something I found interesting.

The other main difference that I noticed between the Americans and others was that the others spoke a lot in their native tongues, mixing that language with English here and there. I so wish I could speak another language. I think it provides a bit of sophistication that one simply cannot get another way.

There are differences amongst all of us. We all must learn to live together and appreciate those differences, but we all must also pull our weight. It is not the responsibility of anyone to care for someone who is able to care for himself or herself. Just like when you were a child and your mother requested you to clean your room, think how you would have felt if she had made you clean your sibling’s room, too, simply because the sibling was too lazy or thought she was beneath it. Even if that sibling was very capable of cleaning it herself and even if you had had no part in creating the mess you were asked to clean up. You would not have liked that.  Well, folks, that is what you do everyday by having a job and paying taxes. Your tax dollars go to support someone, like that sibling, who believes everyone else should care for her just because she doesn’t want to herself.

I think the decline of modern civilization starts with people who live off the public dole. As that increases, those who do the work decreases. At some point the scales tip,and there are not enough people to support those who don’t work. Then, the true quality of life flips, and the country becomes like the Soviet Union in the 1980s.

I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to live somewhere like that.

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