When I lived in Honduras, I tried to ignore the phrase Americans when well-meaning visitors from the United States referred to themselves. In reality, Hondurans, indeed, all of us born in the 2 continents of the New World are Americans. Yet, the word, Americans, is used by people worldwide to refer to people of the United States of America. I moved back to my passport country in mid-2014 after nearly a decade of living in Central America. My assimilation is almost complete.
I am an American. Need proof?
I don’t walk to buy groceries, buy a meal, or visit friends. Ever. I live less than a mile from a dollar store and an excellent cafe. I have friends about a 1/2 mile away. The highways I need to use to access these locales have no shoulders, and the speed limit is 45 mph. Even driving on this highway can be dangerous, so walking is out of the question.
In Honduras, the small store that was yards away from my home had almost everything one needed, from buying time on my cell phone to most household and first aid supplies. We had an excellent lunch cafe in the plaza three blocks away from my house. My best friend often walked the 10 minutes walk to visit or borrow something.
I pay high insurance premiums on everything, including my house, car, and myself. I can’t drive without insurance, I can’t get a mortgage without it, and I am fined if I don’t buy health insurance. In Honduras, I lived without any of these, as the cost of replacement, injury, etc was minimal.
My dog takes anxiety medication. My vet prescribed Xanax for my fur beast yesterday. She offered Prozac, too, but I don’t think BuBu is covered under Blue Cross/Blue Shield. I think he would have preferred to relieve stress by chasing and eating the neighbor’s cat, but we don’t do those things in America. When I posted on Facebook about the dog’s current malady, I had 55 comments. People prayed for my pup. If I had been sick myself, I doubt if I would have garnered more than half dozen “likes.”
In Honduras, my dog caught and ate a few toes off of the neighbor’s parrot. We were not faulted, as the parrot thought foolishly he would hop over and take dips in my pool. I strongly suspect he bit the head off of a curious cat, too. Animals were treated as pets or working animals, not as family members.
Time to log off and finish paperwork so that a highly paid CPA can submit my taxes. The IRS, though, is not limited to taking my money in the US. They take their share wherever I chose to live, as long as I am a US citizen.