Re: 'Friendship is on the Decline'
I resided in Guatemala from 1985 through 1993, in Guatemala City, Antigua, Lake Atitlan, Xela and the South Coast (few of your readers have explored that area of Guatemala). Us Ex Pats stuck together like glue, played chess, had long conversations, visited each others homes and after 1990 some of us met at the "meeting" suprise. We talked. Not much Internet, no cel phones, lot of public faxes. Often travellers, volunteers and old time backpackers like Belize Walter would drop in and tell travel stories, good, bad and ugly. The oral tradition.
As well, I have learned when you live in Latin America and make a Latino friend, in many countries, you have a friend for life.
Your Taxi Driver you mentioned was neaver a "friend" he was friendly to you, a big difference.
In 1988 I had some bad luck, drove to a friends (native Guatemalan)
hotel in Pana, explained my situation and lived there on credit for 3 months, ate rice, beans and tortillas, got some driving jobs and guide work to keep my head above water and survived.
Advice is cheap
Friendship is priceless
People are far more important to me than destinations!
I stil go to the countryside in El Salvador and tak with the campesinos about the civil war years of the 1980s and early 1990s and with older folksols, like me, how the world has changed since the early 1970s when I first arrived to El Salvador and Guatemala. I love the oral tradition, spoke hours this morning with an old friend back from living in USA. Too complicated for him and his wife now. Too PC for me. Nuff said.
interesting... "Say, hello Mary, how are you Mary, people love to hear their name as much as they want to see their FACE on Facebook."
I always thought this was an Americanism, because we don't do this much in England. When someone says 'hey Ash, how are you, Ash?' I get a bit un-nerved, i don't feel the need tohear my name. If people throw it in throughout a conversation, I tend to get more awkward. I notice this in most English people.
Because I live in university Halls, I meet many people from around the world, and it has taken me a long time to get used to the American way of using my name too much. When a fellow English person does it, I tend not to talk to them again.
Similarly, I think Americans over here find it hard to get used to this sort of exchange:
'how are you ash?'
'I'm well, thanks, and you?'
I do not name people unless I think there is some potential for confusion over who is being addressed.
I think this may be the English being weird, not the Americans.