【明報專訊】When I was living in the south of France, an American asked if I still felt very American. At the risk of offending him I had to answer no. The truth is, I don't know if I ever thought or felt much like an American. Being part of a place requires making an effort of some sort, which could be something as inconsequential (微不足道的) as having a penchant (偏愛) for hot dogs, or maybe knowing the batting averages of a couple of baseball players. On the other hand, it could be something quite meaningful, like stitching the flag on one's sleeve or putting decals of Old Glory (美國國旗外號) on one's luggage. I thought hard about the question, however, and in the end I suppose there are a lot of things a person does or doesn't do in the interest of being a part of a place.