After a third of what I reasonably expect to be my lifetime; it was about time to visit the United States of America. Actually, New York to be more precise which we were told in advance is not quite representative for the rest of the country.
What is certainly representative was the reception at the airport. Apparently the people sitting their behind the counters and checking passports and visa, are not allowed to talk, smile or blink. Only give signs of right hand (for scan), right thumb (for scan), left hand (you get the picture)… Speaking in border control terms, I felt more welcome in Russia where I was told in advance that smiling at the person behind the counter was not a good idea.
What helped was the chatting with the girl in the taxi queue. She did say “Welcome to New York” and smiled. Nothing anybody at the hotel reception would make the mistake to repeat.
Having managed that bit, I came, saw and was amazed.
Pictures by Lura