Travelling abroad for a coule of weeks at a time is the most civilised way of viewing other countries, cultures and customs. If you go for a much longer trip, there can be a tendency to overlook the finer details. Take the way our cousins in the US do up their houses. I was watching the hundreds of daytime cycle of home purchase, home renovating / home demolishing and starting over kind of format. It’s incredible how rude some of the ‘punters’ are who are hauled around varius properties by the genial hosts . . . . over here we politely remain quiet when shown a complete wreck, then we quietly mention that perhaps this or that feature could be rearranged or disponsed of. The chance of finding a property to buy with exactly the right style of kitchen, with perfect tiles, floor, cabinets, sink etc. would e impossible. We expect to be ripping them out and starting over. In the US, all this has to be done before the sale starts. All very different to the practices back home.