…… but I wouldn’t want to live there

I didn’t experience the ‘wow’ in one sense because of the overcast weather. I didn’t ever experience it either in that sense of loving the place. Almost the reverse in fact. (Just as I think I’m the only person on earth who doesn’t like Edinburgh. Give me Glasgow!!)

The niggling thoughts about NYC finally crystallised with the armed policeman (is there any other sort, these sad days?) on his beat. And his beat was? … stationed “inside” a Barnes & Noble bookshop “because people steal books and undesirable people come in from outside.” I thought it totally bizarre. As the cop thought me for thinking that.

For me, it was worse than Russia: the armed presence “everywhere”, not only the regular police, but any number of private security police, armies, forces. I’m also glad I didn’t start counting the number of bag searches and body screenings: they were constant, making going anywhere even more depressing. Americans cherish “freedom” and “liberty” but their notions of them and mine don’t coincide. Then again, just as I don’t visit tourist attractions at home, probably Americans don’t either so the body/bag search aspects wouldn’t be as irksome (to put it politely) to them as to me.

Bin Laden might now be dead, but he did win.

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