Davis, California - ZIP 95616

The land of the free – finally I would get there. I'd heard so much about it, both good and bad, in fact everyone seemed to have some sort of opinion about the Yankees. For "Yankees" was but a metaphor for "Americans" and really had nothing to do with baseball or New York at all. And that's partly why I knew I had to go.

There are so many preconceptions and so much prejudice in one culture about the other that unless you actually go there and experience it outside the cultural goggles of your own society, you'll never really know what you're talking about. So even though the sun, the babes and the palms were all nice, that's not really what I went there for. And that's not what I appreciated the most about the place either. It's the fact that the US is diverse – in its culture, in its people, in its environment, and in its opinions (which are not at all as one-sided as it seems from abroad). That is not to say that I liked everything I saw – I didn't – but the diversity of that country is nevertheless profound and liberating.

Let me share a story on diversity and beauty:

Up in the mountains it was, surrounded by fog. Big Basin Redwood State Park north of Santa Cruz. The distance between the houses got longer and longer, while the trees grew more and more dense. Then, at last, we arrived to the place where the lungs find rest. Through the windows only the trunks could be seen, we had to get out of the car (unusually enough for the US) to be able to appreciate these oldies' tall splendor. After a one hour trek in sheer admiration and frenetically deep breaths to get rid of, if at all possible, all the Los Angeles smog, among the Mother-of-the-Forest and the Father-of-the-Forest, 110m high massives that had been led by the sun to grow straighter than an American street, we could peacefully continue back to the honking streets and pedestrian filled pavements of the San Francisco "civilisation".

So long bro'