We are in week three of our amazing adventure, with Laos as our first stop. As part of our journey in Laos we had an amazing 3-day cruise down the Mekong on a luxurious boat that had 12 cabins, all equipped with showers, toilets and AC. There were 16 people on the cruise. We were the only Americans. The rest were Swiss, German, French, and Australian. “Where are you from?” is invariably our first question. Once we say we’re from the US, the next question is actually only a word, “Trump?”
Two men from Australia were at our table the first night for dinner and I was captivated by how much they knew about the US. These Australians knew more about our government, who holds what positions and many of the nuances about our political system, than most Americans. Then it hit me! Who is their President? Is it even the President, or the Prime Minister who leads Australia? I had no idea. In fact, who is the head of Switzerland, and what kind of government do they have? How about France? Well, I know a bit more about France, and I do know that Angela Merkel is the leader of Germany.
I’m proud to be an American, but embarrassed by our government. I’m also humbled by how little, many of us, as Americans, know about other countries. I travel a lot and on this journey one of my goals is to learn something new each day. If I listen to what people say I can often hear what’s in their hearts. I consider myself a citizen of the world and I’ll keep learning.
By the way what I learned today is that Malcolm Turnbull is the Prime Minister of Australia.
Stay in touch and I will too.
With love and gratitude,