She Walked in Through the Out Door

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And so did he, and so did the mom, and her kids, and the almost blind guy and anyone who can read “exit” and just doesn’t give a dang. In Santiago, people don’t like to follow directions much or pay attention to people around them. Unless you make your presence very known with a loud Permiso!, at which point many people will jump out of the way for you. I think it makes things more complicated. There’s more waiting, like when a group of six decides to walk arm in arm down the sidewalk during rush hour. Or when the school kids get out of class and instead of gathering to chat in the park decide to just take up the entire sidewalk. To some, standing at the entryway to the subway train seems like a perfectly good place to stop and tie your child’s shoes with rivers of people streaming by on all sides. Chillaxin’ on the subway steps for a marathon make-out session is pretty common, too. I could complain more than I already do, or I could continue on with this patience learning thing. It may be less about patience and more about practicality. People don’t care all too much about arriving on time, so they’re just more relaxed about these things than me. The bright spot is it seems more people are starting to realize that it’s easier to get on a bus/train if you let the exiting people off first instead of trying to push into each other like opposing battle fronts. ¡Deja bajar antes de subir! Or you can do like I do and try to avoid public transportation and get yourself your new best friend: a bike.

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