A blond walks into a post office…

Posted on June 10, 2009 by pacificyorkshirebird

avt_kapyork_large115Hello Readers!  I’ve been back in the US two weeks now.  This is about the time I would normally be packing my suitcase and getting on the plane to return to the UK.  But I’m staying this time.  Mr. Charismatic is here too – they let him in with his shiny new immigration visa

Here are a few of our US based anecdotes:

1. On my very first day I went to the local post office (to get some Simpsons stamps for a friend back in England). One of the customers was sending something to Canada and just couldn’t resist making Canadian jokes… jeez.

2. My second day back I was standing 3 feet away from someone in a grocery store and she actually moved to get out of my way!  Can you imagine?  It is actually a little eerie sometimes how uncrowded places are.

3. On the other hand, Mr. Charismatic’s pet peeve about lackidasical people who step out in front of you without noticing you has been irritated several times.  In parking lots people have just opened their car doors not even noticing we were just about to walk past them.  Other times, people will come from around a corner and just walk slowly in front of us and taking up the wide sidewalk not even knowing we are behind them.

4. Smoking seems to be on the increase in the Pacific NW.  Who knew?

5. Several independent shops have displayed ”Recession hours” on their doors. 

 6. My American accent was back in full swing within the first week of being back.  But there are still irritating words or ways of saying things that I overhear every once in a while.

7. Ranch dressing is so much better than I remembered!

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What Others Are Saying

  1. Michelle March 29, 2010 at 8:57 am

    Yes, I’ve also noticed that Americans in the supermarket give me about a 5-foot cushion from them, even if we are the only 2 people in the whole store, even if they have to run their carts into the shelves in order to give me that much space — so weird, after bumping into people all the time (or nearly touching) in the UK and thinking nothing of it, not even noticing.

    Of course, people in many places in the US midwest expect you to look them in the eyes and acknowledge them all the time, even when driving, even though they are strangers! I learned after living so long abroad not to make eye contact and to keep a kind of fuzzy-middle-distance kind of eye focus, which makes people back here in the US feel that I’m really uppity and rude, when I’m just trying to give them the privacy and respect that this implies in the UK. So they say “hello” and “excuse me” really loudly in the supermarket, and I end up feeling caught off-guard and pinned-down, so I shuffle past, uncomfortably blinking… (sort of like a shy British guy would in an unexpected social conversation with a gung-ho American girl, I guess! Yes, I think I’ve caused this very look on others’ faces that I now get myself.)

  2. Lisa June 15, 2009 at 9:28 pm

    My friends and relatives in the US have heard me bitch about missing ranch dressing more than a few times. My mom even sent me some powdered kind to make but it just wasn’t the same as I used to have when living there *sigh*…the things we take for granted. :)

  3. yankeebean June 14, 2009 at 11:05 pm

    Pacificyorkshirebird!!! Sooooo good to ‘see’ you. I’m totally stifling home-sickness after reading this post.

    I’ve also had a genius business idea to make my fortune. Make Ranch dressing in the UK, I’d make a fortune :)

    Oh wait, someone beat me to it!

    http://www.americansoda.co.uk/uk/American-Soda/Home/Groceries/Sauces-+-Dressings/Ranch-Dressing.aspx

  4. Rachel June 13, 2009 at 10:22 am

    Teri — just want to say you’re not alone. I’ve been dealing with a six month delay due to all the new regulations. Fingers crossed that we both have the VISA angels smiling upon us in the near future!

  5. Teri June 11, 2009 at 8:08 pm

    ranch dressing: just gets better with time. AND distance.

    but reading about that shiny new immigration visa is ROUGH. i’m still in the US awaiting my UK visa… I thought it would take a few weeks and it’s already passed the six month mark… and i’m living in my hometown… with my parents… in indiana. although i’m in the “home stretch” right now (or at least that’s what people keep telling me), it feels worse and worse every day. it’s been 7 business days since my application was submitted. it feels like whole eras. if i check my inbox any more times today [or listen intently for the UPS truck, or impatiently wait for a phone call from my lawyer, or play suspenseful games with my browser tabs so that i won't be constantly aware of the fact that the "(1)" i'm waiting for to appear next to my gmail inbox just hasn't come yet]… i feel like my entire body will implode.

    i just checked. it didn’t. but still.

    sorry for the unnecessarily tragic self-pitying post! feels like no one can relate and this blog is all i’ve got in that arena.

    good luck on re-acquainting yourself with american life!

  6. peacefulyorkshire June 11, 2009 at 5:51 pm

    Oh my gosh I can’t wait to hear more about adjusting back to life in the USA… I imagine after living in the UK a while it could be quite difficult…?

  7. Michelloui June 10, 2009 at 11:07 am

    Mmmm! Now I want some ranch dressing!! Uh oh…mini pangs of homesickness…

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