Every time someone asks me about how my semester abroad is going I say, “so far so good.” As I’m currently typing this, classes start tomorrow so thus far, my first week has simply been a lot of “getting adjusted”.
Getting adjusted has meant buying my own toilet paper because for some reason my 8 flat mates go through a roll in what seems like minutes. Getting adjusted has meant saying “Er-nest-ah” instead of Ernesta, and “No, Hope College is different” in almost every conversation. Getting adjusted has meant wearing several layers with at least one hoodie whilst always carrying an umbrella, and awing at the 5 minutes of blue sky per day. Getting adjusted has meant experimenting new Pringles flavors and laughing with new friends about my reaction to Rice Fusion Japanese BBQ Teriyaki Flavor. (I’m very anxious to try Rice Fusion Tikka Masala Flavor).
So far, it has also meant creating hot takes on the UK in comparison to the US.
Here are a few from the Notes App on my phone:
Fanta – pale orange color, very fizzy, tastes more like an actual orange? needs more sugar ***all the soda here needs more sugar
Salt & Vinegar Chips – weird tasting vinegar, doesn’t make me want to cry like salt & vinegar should, also comes in green “walker” (lays) bags instead of blue
Netflix – so far 10/10, has fresh prince of bel air and new seasons release here sooner than at home. no harry potter?
Public Transportation – bus drivers sometimes very late, got yelled at once for not being able to distinguish change, fun riding on the top level and site seeing
Dominos pizza – very aggressive with advertising
Water – I’ve basically only seen 3 different water fountains here???
Pounds – see public transportation* it’s not my fault the amount of currency and size of coin seem to have no correlation, very confusing
Five Guys – really quite good, for some reason I like the cheese better here. (is it American cheese?)
Ketchup – much, much improved, not as runny and lack luster as before, **paying 20 pence for ketchup in restaurants is wild though
Sinks – I’ll never understand why the hot and cold water come out of different faucets… either you get boiling or ice cold, no mixing
Outlets – you have to turn on an outlet before you can use it, for anything. even the stove! conserving energy, 10/10
Pickles – universally bad but here they’re called gherkins which is decidedly worse
Pound Bakery – God bless pound bakery! there should be one on every street in every city, minced beef and onion pies are 12/10
Squirrels – I’ve only seen one :/