Things I Learned Living In
Americans adore British accents, even if they don’t quite understand their rich regional variety. But think about it. Dick Van Dyke’s faux cockney accent in Mary Poppins was copied by Ross in an episode of Friends and Dan Cheadle in Ocean’s Eleven. Many Americans I met were surprised I was British because I didn’t sound like that. I took it as a compliment.
And it’s certainly true that Brits and Americans speak the same language differently. I learned the hard way that vocabulary doesn’t always travel well. Whatever you do, don’t make the same mistake I did and go into a hardware store to buy something to carve a joint on.
I lived in
and despite its 800 miles of dramatic coastline, glorious sandy beaches and
vibrant surfing culture, the Pacific Ocean is
so cold you need a wet suit to enjoy it. I learned that the hard way too.
is a joy. Most of the roads
are long and straight and drivers are generally polite. But as a Brit abroad,
there were a few surprises. You can turn right at a red traffic light and
instead of roundabouts, American roads have a ‘four-way stop.’ Priority goes to
the vehicle stopping first but when two vehicles stop at the same time, you’re supposed
to give way to the vehicle on the right. When you approach at the same time as
a car coming from the opposite direction, the vehicle that’s turning gives way to
the one going straight on. Let’s just say it took me a while to get the hang of
And finally, I didn’t realise
had hundreds of counties where alcohol is prohibited. Luckily for me, America
isn’t one of them. Napa Valley
Thanks Colette, for sharing this great post! Check back later today to read my review of this beautiful book!