I lived 22 years in the states, 17 of which were in NYC. I lived a few years in Manhattan (studio), then I bought a house in Bayridge, Brooklyn and had kids there. I taught at a university (engineering) in Brooklyn and had many friends both young and old.
It’s you who hasn’t seen the world and don’t know what the rest of the world knows about your ‘exceptional’ country. Your metaphor is not :). As Eastwood says, you are a legend in your own mind. Snap out of it.