Tuesday, 1 July 2008


Umm, well - it's big. I've been a bit under the weather this past week or so with a mild to moderate case of culture shock. Having visited the US twice before I must admit that I wasn't quite expecting it but this time around I have had to deal with more mundane things like social security and banking.

As an aside, it wasn't until I was at uni I think until I realised that the US is commonly referred to as such, and not as America. Why is that?

So, big - big cars, big roads, big coffees. I made the mistake of ordering my usual large hot chocolate and ended up with nigh on a litre of the stuff. We went to car dealer yesterday to buy a small, used car (hard to come by) and were confronted by a showpiece Lincoln of truly offensive proportions. Cars here are big - really big - and every second person seems to drive a 'truck'. I have no idea what they are transporting, or think that they need to transport, in these trucks. Perhaps just in case they ever need a piece of farm machinery here in the middle of the city?

So, you know how it is when you're sick - it's all too easy to just complain and complain. I will continue to document my symptoms over the next few (dozen) posts which may be very tedious for any North American readers - my apologies in advance. I promise, however, to balance any critical observations with a positive. Like the great public transport that we have here on our doorstep - some half a dozen bus routes run within a few blocks of our apartment. They don't run very often (maybe only three an hour) but so far I have found them to be very prompt. Many of them are wheelchair accessible and they have a bicycle rack on the front so that commuters can transport their bikes. I think that this is fantastic. Hooray for King County Metro Transit.

Oh, and for jumbo strawberries.


Moorecat said...

It is weird to move to a similar culture, but still feel displaced; I felt the same when we went to the UK.

Keep an eye on your snail-mailbox - it may hold a little tonic any day now :)

Di said...

Ahh yes, the cars. the big big big cars. I just don't get that either. So unnecessary...
But great to hear about the buses!!

yarnivorous said...

Welcome to the USA! It's weird how similar us Aussies are to Yanks but how different too - like the uncanny canyon, the division between humans and not-quite humans (eg shop dummies). We look at the trucks too and wonder... but now that petrol costs "so much" here people are panicking.

Anonymous said...

Glad to see the move went smoothly and you're settling in to the land of the giants.

Anonymous said...

I am so glad if USers are calling their country the US. It isn't America (South America is not the US and neither is Canada... and so on). Great strawberries!