Originally Posted by Klynne
Can you guys think of anything else? Helpful hints?
I have been to Belgium, northern France, and Holland before, but I was an exchange student and had a family looking out for me. This time, it is a tour guide, and I will be taken care of, but mom and I will have some time on our own to do lunch and what not. I am not nervous about being alone in any other country other than France. They did not seem to like me when I was 17, I tried to be friendly but they were not having it. So, If any of you have advice, I would appreciate it.
I think the best advice is to go with an open mind and leave all of your preconceptions about what a country should
be like behind. If I were to paste a stereotype on the "bad american tourist", it would be the person who strolls into a country, speaks English to people and acts surprised if they don't know how to, and expects to find 6 types of soda on tap with free refills everywhere he/she goes. On the other hand, the stereotyped "bad frenchman" is the one who will act arrogant and cocky on all occasions, just to provoke you.
Unfortunately, the bad ones are usually the loud ones and the ones you notice, hence the respective reputations of France and the US worldwide.
The best advice I could give you is that you should try to be as open as possible and not give up on the french the minute you hear a snarky comment from someone. The majority of the french secretly admire americans (and some will even admit to it). Bear that in mind and try not to judge too much. You'll have a great time !
oh...and try not to wear a beret or an eiffel tower T-shirt, because that's just asking for it