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While at the subway station during the morning’s commute in Rome, my husband and I positioned ourselves to the front of the crowd.
“Surely there is not enough room in the trains for all these people on the platform,” I whispered to my husband.
No room by American standards in the train, yes. But by Italian standards, there is still plenty of room to squeeze in the three stragglers running down the platform as speakers announced that the doors are closing.
“Look on the bright side, hon, at least there are no professional people pusher here,” whispered my husband.
The lucky ones on the trains are able to enjoy a 1-inch perimeter of personal space, but the rest of us have to contend with the jab of someone’s handbag on their backs or crushed toes resulting from someone’s unsteady stance. I am surprise there isn’t more incidences of groping in such close quarters.
Surprisingly there isn’t anyone “American size” on the train. There are a few slightly overweight people on the train, typically middle aged, but they would have been considered “small” at home. Is that the secret to packing the train in other countries? Just let “small” people ride the train while all the “big” people drive to their destinations?
Before even opening our mouths we were immediately identified as Americans even though there are plenty of Asian Italians. Once again, I cannot help but wonder… is it our size?
When my husband and I were in China a few years ago, it was definitely our size that gave us away. We were twice as big as the locals in China. In Rome, we were the slightly overweight young couple. Maybe that is it. If we have a few gray hairs and some laugh lines, we might not have stood out as much.
Oh wait, maybe it was the camera bag, that can double as a diaper bag, my husband insist on lugging around.
Until next time and thanks for stopping.
Photo by: asithi.
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