Monday, August 22, 2011

Life's a beach....

It's August and the entire nation of Spain is on vacation for the summer holidays. That's right ---the Spanish take a whole month off for vacation.  If you've traveled to Europe, you are perhaps familiar with the reverence with which Europeans hold vacation time.  Schools are closed, businesses are closed, and most European families crowd beaches where they spend hours roasting themselves to a nice steamed lobster color.  How do I know the sunbathing habits of European people, you may be wondering?  Because I live in Miami and any day at the beach here can easily turn into an anthropological study of the loafing habits of Germans, Italians, Spanish, French, and other EU nationalities.

Like most Americans, I find the European tendency to come to a screeching halt in August charming and illustrative of the high quality of life that is so lacking in the U.S.  At the same time, I can't help but get a little testy sometimes since I'm actually in the position now of needing these vacation-loving European people to be in their offices, answering their phones, and getting back to their emails. But as the Professor has pointed out to me more than a few times, you just can't have it both ways. You can't get frustrated at our future countrymen in Spain for not being the same obsessive workaholics that we Americans are and simultaneously covet their more laid-back lifestyle.

So, let's just go ahead and covet.  But as you sit in your chilly cubicle reading this post, answer me this: If you could take a month off from work for vacation, where would you go?

P.S. In case you were wondering, the photos above are of the only tourist-free stretch of Miami beach :)

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