The 5 Biggest Differences

London, Parliament, England, Ben Ben
So, to the meat and potatoes (arroz y habichuelas in Puerto Rico)! These observations are purely facts (with a small bit of my opinion thrown in) and not listed in any particular order. Thank you for reading this far! I’m sure you’ll enjoy the remainder. Of course, I must mention that I did bulge Europe, a continent composed of 50ish states (depending on your political views), into a single entity, but I was careful to choose things that I have personally observed and experienced in at least a few different countries in Europe. So, that should count for something, right?
Smoking
I recall a time in the US if you’d go to a restaurant and they would ask you,”smoking or non-smoking?” Now, what’s non-smoking. Most public places are smoke-free zones. As a non-smoker, I love this. However, moving to Europe might not have been the wisest place to move to get a non-smoker who is bothered by the smell.
Granted, there are a number of locations where you’ll see a no-smoking sign, but they’re few and far between, especially if you want to go out for nightlife. And even if there’s absolutely no smoking indoors, there are, without fail, at least three smokers sitting directly in front of the door of whatever non-smoking establishment. Europe seems to be getting the”smoking is bad for you” rhetoric and scientific evidence to back it up, just slightly later than the US. Although, I am aware that France is aggressively tackling the issue and has seen adequate results.
Driving
I cannot say with any assurance that European drivers are worse than American drivers. I can say that driving expectations are different and so affect how drivers act. For example, on European highways there are not exits every 12 miles with gas and food options, like in the states. Or, that you can turn right on red in America, but this is prohibited in Europe. And, my personal/least favorite, there are no highway cops, and any ticket you’ll get will come from a (sometimes cleverly hidden) camera on the side of the road that flashes a bright white light of guilt at you, and you get to lament speeding, all the way home.
Food
The grocery store in the states is quite similar to a European grocery store, but only add two more cereal aisles, a whole chips-candy-soda aisle, three more health food aisles, remove the wine and beer aisle(s), and voila, the stores are identical.
In Europe, the rations are not large enough that there’ll be any food left, but if you request to take the food home you may received some perplexed stares, and may possibly leave empty handed.
Nature Calls
In America, if you gotta go, it is fairly easy to find a restroom at a gas station or a public place (excluding New York). In Europe there are plenty of countries that charge you to use the bathrooms at gas stations and in public places, but there are some others that simply do not even have a bathroom to offer. If you’re accustomed to not going before you leave the house in the states, when you go to Europe, I would not suggest taking that chance.
Customer Service
We all knew it was coming. Anyone who has been to Europe (or even Europeans who have visited the US) understands that most European countries are not known for their stellar customer support (cough, cough France & Germany cough,cough). Shoot, if you’ve ever seen a movie or heard someone else talk about their visit to Europe, you probably knew that!
A bad customer service experience in Europe is one of those things that is not always as bad as it seems, but it will for sure happen to you once; just like in the united states! But, the differences are the motives and your recourse. In Europe, they do not, so kissing your butt isn’t vital to their livelihood. Also, in Europe, there is no Better Business Bureau, so if a bank teller or store owner is rude to you, you just have to suck it up and not shop there anymore.
So, what do you think?
Am I 100% right or just 99% right?

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