Newly in Europe, I once again have to adjust. For the first days I knock over glasses, bump into door jams, and stub my toe on furniture. Perhaps this ungainliness is partly due to that amusing haze we call jet lag. However, most of the problem is my sense of space. Cars are smaller and parked closer together, apartments have less square feet (or meters), and the distance between one person and the next is reduced. It is entertaining to watch a freshly arrived American speak with someone from Spain at a party. A sort of dance occurs as the Spaniard moves closer to speak familiarly and the American steps back to preserve his or her personal space. One step forward and another back is repeated until the two have traveled across the room. Perhaps there is some explanation in the fact that we’re a culture that historically could always move further west, but the simple reality is that people from the US ask for more space than those who live in other parts of the world. Environmentalists will point out that this attitude extends beyond personal space and the size of cars; indeed it seems we ask more from the world than just about any other culture. Do we really need a house that is that big or that far from our neighbors? Does the car have to have so much room? If people in the rest of the world are able to make do with less why can't we?