So...does anyone else out there miss summer vacation?
Week upon week of nothing in particular to do, and nothing in particular to worry about except the vague nagging sensation that someday school will start again. So much time off that you start to get a little bored, and excited about back-to-school sales on pens and notebooks. (At least, if you were an academic geek like me you got excited...)
The standard adult American two weeks a year (and that's if you're lucky) just doesn't cut it. Not only is two weeks not enough time to get properly bored, but it's barely enough time to fly to Scotland or New Orleans or Machu Picchu, run around like mad, and then come back and go to work the very next day.
Unemployment might seem like the adult equivilent. But really, it makes a pretty poor substitute, with all the worry and job searching and low self esteem and bankruptcy and so on. The whole point of summer vacation is the lack of pressure to do anything more useful than make cheese quesadillas in the microwave and re-read The Lord of the Rings for the umpity-umpth time.
I've read that Europeans routinely get six weeks off, without even trying. This is very annoying. It's like they want to punish our ancestors for having deserted for North America. Nyah, nyah, Europe wasn't good enough for you, hah. We'll show you what you're missing.
I mean, it's not like Europe is some backwater place without indoor plumbing. (Although, I'll say this without apology, North American plumbing is the best in the world and we should be very proud of this fact.) You can get outstanding espresso and cheese in most parts of Europe. Plus, fresh produce and Internet service and movies. And, in the UK you can get plenty of books in English, with funky covers that seem better because they are different.
And yet, with all these amenities, six weeks of vacation.
Just think about it, my fellow Americans.