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Sunday, May 04, 2008

Should I have apologised?

I was walking past the White House the other day, when I suddenly thought to myself that perhaps I should go and apologise because it was burned down by the British in the War of 1812. I know it's all the rage to apologise for ancient wrongs, and I want to surf the zeitgeist.

White House

I have to say it was a beautiful day and as I had a couple of hours free I walked all around the White House and down to the Washington Monument and part way along to the Capitol and a few others places. While I was having coffee, I read an article in the Washington Post about American's giving up their cars and using public transport. I have to say that I've been using the bus and transit here -- I didn't take a taxi once -- and it works very well. I caught the bus to West Falls Church metro and then took the metro downtown. I also took the bus over to Tyson's Corner for a $2 exchange rate rampage. The buses were pretty much on time, comfortable and only $1 (that's a fraction of what I pay to ride the bus to Woking train station, which is the equivalent of $3.50) each way. There was even a story in the Post about a couple getting married and then taking the metro -- along with all of their guests -- to the reception. Once major difference between riding the bus in Washington D.C. and riding the bus in Woking that I noticed was the civility. People were being nice to each other. The teenagers weren't drunk, swearing at everyone or listening to loud music and one or two of them even -- unprompted -- said hello to me. Even the BBC have begun to acknolwedge this...

I have met incredulous British tourists who have been shocked to the core by the peacefulness of the place, the lack of the violent undercurrent so ubiquitous in British cities, even British market towns.

[From BBC NEWS | Programmes | From Our Own Correspondent | America's 'safety catch']
In the future, everyone will be famous to fifteen people.
[posted with ecto]

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