Went on a cheese tour through some of the city today - and while it was interesting, frankly I am all cheesed out at this point. If you asked me if I wanted cheese tonight, I'd say "Nope! All good on the cheese front here." Which is damn hard to pull off in Paris - you can't fart in any given direction without hitting some cheese, no pun intended. But, nevertheless I have managed to get my fill of any and all types of cheese at this point. Even queso which is a type of cheese to my people would be on the "thou shall not pass list." Fromaged-out, as one would say - if one had made up the word "Fromaged".
After the cheese exposition I toured around the city on my own for several hours, and discovered something else - I don't walk like a European. They take quick, rapid steps and I take long, lumbering steps. They can probably hear me coming - if they couldn't hear me coming they could certainly have smelled the remains of the cheese carcasses on me! I know why they walk that way too...it's not just the tight pants, and pointy shoes, it's the freaking mass of humanity with no personal space. They are crammed in here and all walking (the real reason they are thin is that they walk everywhere). But, back to my point, if there is one...I don't do small, quick-steps...I might take long, "quicker-steps" somewhere - but the little chop-chop-chop crap is out for me. Which, frankly makes me a giant nuisance in the Paris sidewalk activity.
So yes, my fellow American's I have discovered the problem overseas and he is me! I am the big ugly American looking for a Starbuck's and saying MERCY here in Paris...and it has dawned on me that nobody is going say anything about it. They just roll their eyes, walk around me, and utter little things under their breath. For example, late last night on the top of the Eiffel tower a pushy Asian man tried to force me into a space that didn't exist, and I reminded him with my elbow that, "NO - I don't fit in your time-frame of exiting the platform, and you can wait!"
In short, I am spoiled with space. I like big rooms, open space to walk and run, and maybe, just maybe some cheese in a can.