After two overwhelming weeks with positive impressions in the U.S.A , feeling pampered with hospitality , enjoying meeting wonderful women from twenty four different country around the world , I closed with a less interesting encounter as I woke up on the news of cancellation to my flight . Of course I wanted to stay there forever . San Francisco by all means can be my next home if I ever have to choose a home after jerusalem. I learnt it wasn’t nostalgia that always made me feel close to San Francisco but the spirit this city carries within its windy weather .Travelling from D.C to NY and then S.F actual allowed me to feel each city and build up a better judgement of how I perceived each .
Somewhere in between the professional impressive experience I was learning and the secret words of what I believe lies behind that systematic success of the making of what marks today’s strongest capitalist empire was the unlimited devotion, persistence and what seemed to be satisfaction in people’s attitudes , whether it was in a high profile meeting or a cashier at a store or a taxi driver or a doorman or marking it all in one “simple” act of sophistication in Broadway’s Phantom of the Opera work of genius . Everyone wears a smile of devotion to whatever he or she do . They tend to serve you in order to sell you whatever is sellable and whatever you may want to buy and always with your utmost satisfaction . Mentioning systematic, this word also may serve the description of people’s behavior , at some point I was thinking , these people are obsessed with standing in lines . If they don’t find one they make one . And waiting of course is anything in its lines but what describes our lines . Yes it is true that it describes a system and in many ways respectful behavior , things we don’t actually have.
At some point I got nervous from all those nice behaving people . Everyone smiles , thanks politely , is ready to help . It was always welcoming .
Something was missing however , a sentence made by a lecturer/ presenter from Lebanese origins kept pooling in my head since the first days in Washington , when he said that America is the land where people come and leave their histories behind and start from scratches . His words were meant in good faith but somehow they came to my ears with a noisy screech . As much as we in our lands need to somehow detach from our pasts. Detaching from the past seemed as I heard him putting his words as if erasing ones own identity . That very inner thing that we carry inside us and is definitely connected in a way or another to our pasts . How could we leave it behind completely .
As days passed I started getting his words more in the different faces of ethnicities and races that conforms the U.S.A and one cannot but appreciate how this country opens its arms to people who land on its land and make them welcomed with all possible ways as long as they respect its very simple short constitution . Of course people would appreciate the heaven they landed in after the hells of their countries whether in oppression or starvation.
After all, most of whom conform the America of today are coming for opportunities their countries didn’t give them or deprived them from .
As usual in life , magic eventually disappears . I wasn’t less impressed though , especially that we continued to learn about impressive experiences that reached as far as Google ideas and Facebook , and was as humane as the one thousand mothers forum ( mothers of murdered victims) .
Not a single place and person we met from ceo’s or managers or drivers ever passed without a huge smiling face and full attention to what we had to say and vice versa.
But yet , something didn’t feel completely right . The sky scrapers and giant industries from hi tech to department stores . People success stories and multi millions achievements didn’t by anyway eliminate the homeless spread out through out the different huge cities .. San Francisco downtown seems to transform into homeless land late nights .
But yet there was a bit more of the un magic of global systems I may as well add. The excessive use of iPhones etc made me see it for the first time as if iPhones serve as some sort of breathing machine or heart beats controlling device . It looked nicer in that American perfectly profound setting , seemed more of a normality and part of how life naturally becomes. A scene I rarely saw was a bookshop on the other hand. From one side the legacy of books and best sellers that continue to take headlines and advertisement seems nothing but a legacy of a disappearing reality . I practically couldn’t find a bookstore close or around .. A sad fact that implies to our natural digestion into the e-world.
Faces remained with a smiling wear out . Even the homeless keeps a smile . A holistic feeling of patriotism maybe in the love of that land that gave homes to the homeless ( except those homeless in the streets of America) , dignity and resourceful life to those oppressed, and maybe above all regardless to what goes beyond and underneath , it is a land for all its people in all colors,races and ethnicities.
Except when it came to that smiling woman issuing my ticket to my cancelled flight . It felt suddenly as if the system needed to be re-booted. A major loss of communication took place as we were face to face encountering a not complicated matter . As my distress for not getting her offers ( I cannot really consider flying El Al an offer), her smiling face faded into a sharp tone of irritation . Somewhere with that scene the magic evaporated.. Or maybe the whole experience fell in the perspective of normality .
There is something that happened to the human interaction that is fading away .. We all voluntarily allowed our lives to be swallowed into a palm size device .
I felt like being part of the Truman show movie,when the life of (actor)Jim Carrie was a real tv show he didn’t realize .
People move around with a certain rhythm that despite the smiles and friendliness seems systematic and in however our lives today look like , soulless. People rush to eat and shop . Portions of food are tremendously huge, and walking , no matter how much, doesn’t seem to be of any effect in burning a single calorie of what it ingested in. Obesity in the surrounding seems so natural in a culture that calls you to eat also systematically . And I have to admit , deliciously. I could live in the United States to eat counting calories as they build up inside my growing body . I would enjoy getting obese as long as I am deliciously satisfied with food and with clothes that are designed for my size and with my smart device in my hand. After all … Who needs to look anything when in social media we can live and be whatever we desire in colors and sizes under perfect photoshopping techniques that even the least oriented like me may be able to manouver around .
There is something in life over there that swallows you , no matter where you are , whether in the superior New York or a quiet area in the suburbs around.. A life that swallows inside a preset system that is designed to make your life convenient but fully consumed into it .
Or maybe it was just a normal life … That someone living my life cannot comprehend .. Living inside a maze of complicity that prevent us from catching up with life and it’s normality .

2 thoughts on “America..Reflections
  1. Guess I missed the blog about why you were in the US. I enjoyed your observations, yes, they made me smile. I haven’t been in a city in so long I’d probably feel like you. Of course, even here in Homer, people are embroiled in their phones. But there are some of us who don’t want to be that accessible and don’t live a phone life – even though I am on the computer a lot. But, it gives me the opportunity to see the world a little from your eyes.

    Liked by 1 person

    • i was discussing this with someone on my way back . it feels like it is simply part of a new world .. maybe we are too old for it . we maybe like our grandfathers when electricity was first introduced … apparently this is how life will become . u r lucky to only be with the computer . this is the healthy way . somehow being a mother of four children forces me to be racing with whatever happens in their generation )))


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