"No Smoking"

There are "no smoking" signs all over Jordan. When I first got here, I was relieved to see them. I am allergic to cigarrette smoke (I have asthma) and I was excited to see that there were places where people were "forbidden" to smoke (I know, why did I come to the Middle East if I didn't want to deal with smoke, right?).

Well, lets just say that they could have saved their money on the signs and stickers, because people don't really pay attention to any no smoking signs.

For example: on the outside of the "Markaz al-Lugat" (the language center at the University of Jordan) are two no smoking signs. And then they are posted inside the building, too. And on the outside of the "American Corner" office, which is in Markaz al-Lugat (in which are housed books about America for the Arabs who are studying Americans).

And, there is a "no smoking" sign on the guy's desk who supervises the American corner.

Right next to the ashtray.
Don't worry, he probably only smokes about 10-20/day in there.

Taxis are the worst, in my opinion (but at least most of the time you can open the windows). I hate riding to church in a taxi because I always get out smelling like I have been in a bar, or something.

One day, I saw a no smoking sign on a taxi. A taxi. I was excited and surprised--until I saw the driver smoking inside the taxi.
I guess just the passengers can't smoke?

When we were still living at the Ambassador Hotel, there was a grocery store/combination food court just a block away from our hotel, so I would go there to do homework occasionally. There were at least 20 no smoking signs in the food court, posted on the walls and hanging from the ceiling.

But somehow, I don't remember a time when I didn't see people smoking in there. Maybe the idea is that smoking is only forbidden "right under" the sign, so if you are right next to it you can still smoke.

Or something like that.


Bridget said...

Dude, stand up for yourself! At least in taxis - if they don't want to stop smoking, then don't get in. Some of them will be jerks about it, but then, you didn't really want to ride with them anyway, did you?

You can do it!

Also, it is actually against the law to smoke in a taxi. If you look at their little rider information card, it says so (right by their picture and ID number) (and the statement "cassette tapes are prohibited in annoying form" or something like that). But don't point that out unless as a last resort.

The Paradox said...

Don't come back with lung cancer, ok? You could also try what Carolin's friend in Germany did when having a run-in with a smoker and start coughing obnoxiously, double over, and run away...although that probably isn't the most charitable behavior you could exhibit, nor the most effective...

breanne said...

Silly girl that I am, I didn't even think about telling them not to smoke in the taxis.

I will do that from now on.

Thanks for the idea, Bridget!

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