“We’re not allowed to do it” – “That’s the law” – “You cannot be here”
Phrases I’m getting so tired of, because we hear them all the time in the US. Isn’t this a “free” country?….
We took a train in the evening for a trip that would last about 24 hours. Sleeping cars are very expensive here so we just have to sleep on the seats. When we got on, there was a lot of space in the train so we each took a double seat. Conductor (big black guy) comes. “You together? Then you have to sit together.” Me: “The train’s half empty.” Conductor: “But it’s gonna be VERY FULL.” Me: “Aha, but I can move during the night if you need the seats, no problem.” Conductor: “Huh?” I repeat what I’ve just been saying, but apparently I’ve hurt his personal feelings or something as he just walks away while I’m still talking to him. We sleep each on a double seat and when we wake up in the morning the train is still half empty (as we expected).
The only way to get public internet in this country is at the library. Usually one has to sign up, show a passport, and gets an hour of free internet. At the Chicago library, we got 2 computers, my session starting 15 minutes earlier than Miguel’s, so when I was done I went over to him as we needed to do something together. Security guy comes: “You can’t be on this chair.” Thinking that he didn’t want me to sit on the chair intended for the computer next to the one we were using, I just stand up and continue typing the e-mail I’m writing. Security guy: “No, you can’t be 2 at the same time on one computer.” We: “We’re not making any noise and we just need to do this together.” He: “You need permission from the front desk to do this.”
AAAAHHHHH This is too much for me. I’m done with my e-mail so I tell Miguel to stop talking to that stupid guy, sit down and I’ll go somewhere else and read a newspaper.
Chicago, I need new contact lenses. I go into a big optician’s store and ask if they sell them. “Only if you have a prescription from a doctor or an eye test from us.” I say something like “please, I’m just travelling, I’ve had my eyes checked less than a year ago, I just need some new contact lenses” but it’s “No, we don’t have the right to sell you contact lenses.”
Oh yeah, I could have a problem with my eyes in 2 years and then come back and sue them for having sold me contact lenses without a prescription. Argh, I should just have bought them in Singapore….