Reddit asks Americans: What surprised you about visiting Europe?

paris

Reddit has put the question to American readers: what surprised you about visiting Europe? Some of the answers are quite interesting:

“The Italian’s way of driving. Never in anytime of my life was I more paranoid of being hit by a moped.”

I’m not sure that’s how all Italians drive, but my wife and I had a few close calls while walking in Rome. Many Italians are fearless on their mopeds.

“I first went to Europe as a twelve-year-old kid, and I was shocked by how OLD everything was. Here, a church that’s a hundred years old seems ancient, but in Europe you really do have ancient structures. The sense of centuries and millennia of well-recorded history having played out everywhere I went was sort of crazy.”

I had a similar shock in Assisi. After an American friend had torn down his parent’s 200-year-old barn, we felt as if we had witnessed something historic. Smash cut to my wife and I in Assisi, being told, “That building is almost 1,000 years old.” Wow.

“I was taken aback by how small the village streets are. Also, how quaint the small villages are, they’re like out of a fairy tale.”

Again, I agree. Some rural areas have impossibly narrow streets. It’s very charming.

What surprised you while visiting Europe? Comments are open.