07:11am at the kitchen table drinking coffee with the sibling...
Me: I can't believe that I have to go to work today while everyone else is at home, probably still sleeping.
Sis: Tell me about it. I just want to sit here like this for the rest of the day.
Me: Yes, it's a good day to just sit here, like this...
Sis: Well actually I just want to go to London, go have a coffee at Starbucks, walk around Oxford Street, go to H&M, buy some stuff at Lillywhites, eat a donut, sit in Leicester Square and think: this is so much better than New York.
Me: haha. I'm biased. It's funny because you don't actually realise how "British" we are until you go there. Come to think of it, you don't realise how "Dutch" we are either... until you go to Dutch-land.
Sis: Hmmm, that's so true. Colonialists.
Me: But we're quite Americanized in some of our social habits.
Sis: Yeah. Funny thing, I found Americans to be very nice. Which was a bit of a shock to me because we're always hearing about how rude and arrogant they are on TV and in the movies. So I was quite surprised to find that they are actually quite friendly, polite and warm - I had all kinds of people, complete strangers, greeting me and smiling. In some ways they're even better than us! I'm sure you'll find a few racist prejudicial people, they are in every country, but for the most part they're really nice and polite... and that was a pleasant surprise.
Me: I blame the media. The media dictates how we perceive each other... it's the negative media on our side of the world, and the negative media on their side of the world, that influences the way we see each other. But it's hardly fair for everyone on the outside to judge, and in some cases punish, over 300 million people for the views and actions adopted by their government. It's not fair to judge anyone on where they come from and the views of their government. People are different and have their own beliefs and opinions on most things.
Sis: Yep. We should go to America. I'm sure it would be a lot of fun if we went together. We could go to San Francisco, Seattle, LA, Florida and New York...
Me: Yeah we should go! We should go everywhere they tell us not to go. We should go to America and Iran and Colombia and North Korea... and if we die in any of those places, then at least we can say that we died on holiday. It would be better than dying in a hospital bed surrounded by sad, depressing people.
Sis: Yeah. That would be great... it's 07:28am. Do you want to go?
Me: Just one more minute. I just want to savour this moment, before I start running around like a headless chicken for the rest of the day...