In the past few days, I’ve noticed a fair number of students and other young folk carrying clear plastic water bottles. Some are attached to their backpacks and some are carried around in the hand. This of course is a fairly new phenomenon; I don’t remember it at all from my youth, or even 20 years ago. It must be in response to some medical advice to drink a lot of water and keep hydrated.
The thing is, free water is available everywhere. On campus, every building has water fountains—many of them. Many stores do, too. On the rare occasions when you desperately need water and no fountains are around, any food store will gladly give you a glass of water. Hell, there are even water fountains scattered along the lakefront where I run and walk.
I doubt that this habit is as pervasive in Europe, though water fountains are…
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