Amsterdam still has Febo, and I love them (looks of horror and revulsion from most Dutch people) -- however, they are only out in the street with no sit-down option like in the New York automats of olden times.
I remember a time when we had no telephone exchanges, and my family's phone number (on a 4-party line) was 62030. When exchanges came in they started with the first two letters of a word: Our phone number became MAin 62030
It was a loooooong time ago, rikita, back in the 1950s when I was a child. I can't explain exchanges, but they became necessary when the phone company started running out of the shorter numbers so they had to add the prefixes.
And, k2, I am dying to know where you are from originally. It appears you are "An American In Paris" Only if you don't mind. ;D
Something that is fast disapprearing or so it seems is people's pride in earning a living/ of doing their utmost to NOT depend on the government if they are able to avoid it at all (obviously, I am not talking about those who need and deserve government support, but only of those who routinely abuse the system)
Dans les grandes choses, les hommes se montrent comme il leur convient de se montrer; dans les petites, ils se montrent comme ils sont.
I remember when things were made of metal and lasted forever and never fell apart or wore out. Now everything is plastic and is done in just a few years.
I'm specifically thinking of a small metal fan that was always in the LR at our house. It gave us faithful service during my entire childhood. When we cleaned out the house after my parents died, there was the fan, still perfectly working, but relegated to the attic once air conditioners became common. The cord had become frayed, so I was afraid to use it on a regular basis. (Heaven forbid I should be able to find someone to repair it!)
I then bought a plastic floor stand at Wal-Mart a few years later and, after only 4 or 5 years of use, it literally disintegrated and fell to the floor in pieces. Arrgh!
Back in the mid-eighties I toured the USS Wilmington with my stepfather. Here was this WWII craft out in the elements and really not that well maintained, but still in great condition. That included the leather on the armrests of the big guns, all the bakelite knobs and doo-dads, the metal, etc.
Oh yeah ~~ see what I just posted in Putting Down Roots, about being cruelly served by modern plastic.
I can see that. Like you, I don't like snacking very much; I prefer meals. I have been known to buy frozen curry and other interesting aka Asian-influenced croquettes at Dutch supermarkets, since I was there at a research institute with very limited facilities for small-scale cooking.
Though I still prefer the smoked chicken bits you can buy at Dutch street markets. They do survive heating up with a microwave - ouch! - I've never had one at home and have refused gifts of them - too much counterspace for something I only use when I have to.