USA: A Trip to Seattle III
Last time I concluded my story with a theory of what is a real car for the Americans.
Everyone of us probably knows how a typical American car looks like. Despite I don’t regard myself as a real car fan, in my mind there are typical images of vehicles Americans drive. It would be better to name rather size of cars than some specific car companies. Mostly you would see gigantic jeeps that would probably got stuck oin our narrow streets or ruin your wallet for their large consumption.
We have to bear in mind that the US are adjusted to a different type of travel than we are used to. Being a little specific Seattle however fulfills travel habits of the country. First, high-quality roads, second traveling by car is cheap (and cars are also cheap).
One gallon, or about four liters, costs around 1 dollar a liter. It is more than half the price of gasoline in the Czech Republic. This large disparity gets even bigger if we compare it to purchase power parity. Median salary is about 50 thousands dollar a year in the USA. However, there is a difference between country/city and among regions. But when we compare American median with median in the Czech Republic it is obvious that an average American can buy more consumer goods than an average Czech. Moreover, these goods are of higher quality.
Anyway, back to cars. Cheap car travel has a consequence in bad public transportation. Situation in Seattle, a generally green city (about 90 % of energy in Washington State comes from renewable resources) is little bit better compared to the rest of the country. People drive cars smaller than full-size , there are many bikers, bike trails (trailes on main and busy roads have some adrenaline in them), and also public transportation is good in American standards.
Are you used to high standard of public transportation in the Czech Republic ? Well, using it in the US could e really annoying. Despite the fact that bus lines cover basically every important corner of Seattle, each line has only two buses per hour. Nothing to be happy about, especially when you miss one or it is late, or it misses its interval.
If you think about having some longer trip that requires you to change your bus for 2 or three times, prepare for really long journey. Moreover, one ticket costs 2,5 dollars.
One understands if somebody just resigns on green technologies and rather buys a car, which would save him lot of time. On the other hand, it is clear why Seattle and other, bigger American cities have so huge traffic jams.
To be continued...
Text/photo: Maxim Kucer
New York is known as the City that never sleeps or the Big Apple. It is the largest city in the United States that is also the world center for commerce and finances, and has a significant influence in fashion, education, politics or art.
Previous articles had to demonstrate you the atmosphere a visitor can feel in the United States. Today we will hit the streets of the most important city in the Pacific Northwest.
The EMP museum is a great experience. The building captivates your attention and lures you to explore it closer. There are many exhibitions telling about the cultural character of the city and also showing more general trends of American popular culture.
There are many natural parks in the United States. Maybe you think of Yosmite, Wrangell-St.Elias (the largest US park) or Denali.
Portland is located in the State of Oregon which is adjacent to the State of Washington on north.
There are places that you probably voluntarily nevypravili. One of them will surely prison. Among the best known in America is clearly Alcatraz. His name is not well known outside the country.
In the last article devoted to the United States we have learned something about Alcatraz, a former maximum security prison. Now we move from the Rock and have a glimpse at one of the most distinct cities in the US.
As you may know from previous part of our story, San Francisco is a tourist friendly city. There are enough attractions and sights to keep you occupied at least for a week without you slipping into boredom.
From inglorious Compton with high levels of criminality (decreasing) we move to the place well-known to everyone – Hollywood.
Last week, we were over to Hollywood. It is a place that is in some ways perhaps overrated.
In the last part we visited Universal Studios Theme Park. It was, indeed, a glorious experience. So going to Idaho could seem little bit boring.
Around Hollywood as well as around Las Vegas there are some myths which totally distort the reality of this desert gambling city.
My trip from Las Vegas to Grand Canyon was relatively fast. Desert crossed by a freeway slightly changed to forests of northern Arizona.
Today we jump over the Atlantic to se eone of the most popular places in the world.
I mentioned affordability of consumer goods in the United States in the last part.
A trip long trip abroad means rises one significant question – what I should pack with me? I wouldn’t describe here the whole list what I put into my luggage, of course. There weren’t many things. Important is to not forget important documents.
There are not just historical houses made of red bricks, or tower blocks in Boston but there is also modern architecture such as the building hosting the J.F. Kennedy museum and library, or a controversial Boston city hall or a new center of modern art in Boston.
Boston, the capital of Massachusetts and a center of New England, has played a crucial role in the US history. It was founded in 1630 and the key event leading to the American Revolution happened there – the Boston tea party. Being is the city like living the American history itself, this is also due to the fact that Boston boasts with many firsts.
When you walk around in downtown you would definitely notice City Hall built in an Empire style, on the top there is a statue of the founder of Pennsylvania, William Penn. There is also Independence Hall in the center, the building is included in the UNESCO’s World Heritage lists and also the already-mentioned Declaration of Independence was signed there.
Almost two years while I was working as an au-pair I had lived in suburbia of the center of the whole globe. To describe every attraction worth visiting would take several articles. New York is the most monumental symbol of level of the world civilization. It consists of five districts - Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, Bronx and Staten Island.
Historical landmarks make Boston interesting, indeed, but there are other places one shouldn’t miss. Only then his/her visit will be complete. These places are charming and have their unique atmosphere. Despite thousands of tourists visit them every year, everyone can enjoy them.
I gave myself a four-day vacation in San Francisco in the middle of my two-year au-pair stay in the US. Everyone, who ever was there, never said anything except superlatives and mentioned the difference between east coast and west coast cities.
Today in our article we would like to present you few interesting sites you shouldn’t miss during your visit in New York.
Europeans are close to the United States and whole North America and South America in a way. It is because they afflicted both continents irreversibly.
Next day morning we set out to explore Lombard Street, a street that is world famous for its zigzag character. And really, houses are built to allow everyone who live there to drive in or out on this steep hill.
When you hear Boston you think of a rich history and picturesque streets with brick houses. However, there are other sights in the city you won’t forget. It wouldn’t be always a pleasant experience but they are worth seeing.
I had visited Washington D. C. during my two-year stay in the US. I had spent there three days for I considered it a duty to visit the city not only for it is the US capital but also for its vicinity. It is about 250 miles/400 kilometers from New York.
I decided to spent part of Christmas in the former capital of the State of Pennsylvania and the whole United States. During my introductory au-pair course I met a Czech with whom I still stay in touch, she invited me to her home in Philadelphia.
I started my two-year stay in the US in Pittsburgh. I had stayed there for four mostly summer months. There I had first experiences of living in a foreign country, adapting to new habits, food, people and I also tried to overcome the language barrier.