14 December 2013
Coming Home after a year abroad!
We are super excited to go on holiday for two weeks back to USA. What will it be like returning to the Boston area after 15 months away? Expats living far away all wonder the same thing. How will it feel when you are home? Is your home away from the USA more of a home now than where you used to be? Here are my top 10 things to adjust to in coming back to the USA. 1. Driving NZ driving has roundabouts more than stop signs. Plus, we drive with the left side of the road, so coming back to driving on the right will be hard. Wish me luck! 2. Sizes of food When I moved to NZ, all the food looked gourmet in its appearance and tiny. So will USA food seem huge and super sized and more basic? 3. Weather We are leaving NZ summer in December for a winter wonderland in Boston and Vermont. So hard to pack for a season change that extreme. My kids don't own any snowboots or warm gloves anymore. We will freeze to death in the switchover. 4. Walmart and Target Big box stores that carry everything from groceries, pharmacy, toys, tools, and clothes. Having so many choices for shopping in one place will be awesome, but also weird. I am now used to going to four places to get groceries, tools, clothing, and toys. How strange will it be to be in a superstore? The Warehouse in NZ pales in comparison. 5. Loudness NZ is quiet and filled with gardens and quiet peaceful folk. I am super loud and opinionated for NZ. Will I find Americans too loud and opinionated on return? Or will I blend more into the sea of loud and proud Americans? 6. Food Supermarkets in USA have so many choices. Will it be easy to go back to chicken nuggets and Poptarts? Will I miss NZ cheese and yoghurt ( yogurt) and multigrain Burgen bread? How about chicken flavour ( flavor) chips? Onions in all dishes including quiche and macaroni salad? 7. Exercise My gym in NZ ( Cityfitness) has become a regular part of my day in NZ. Will Plymouth Fitness seem strange now that I am returning on holiday, with its dark spin room, smoothie bar, and Espresso video game bikes? Or will it be awesome? 8. Family Being away from loved ones is hard. However, it can also be a readjustment to family time mode if you are used to doing your own independent thing. It will be great to see everyone again and give them a proper hug, not just a Skype one. 9. Friends Reconnecting with old friends is great. Will they have changed since I have been away? Will their kids seem super tall and smarter now that they are older? Catching up will hopefully be like old times. 10. Atmosphere- Ozone Will it be strange going back to where the ozone layer is thick? I wear 50 SPF sunblock daily in NZ to avoid getting burned. Will it be cool to walk outside and not be radiated by the sun? Will I miss the brightness of NZ? Will it seem normal or strange? Check out this super bright sunny day at our afternoon Christmas concert. Bright light! Excited to return for a visit to the USA after all this time. I will post some impressions of life in US now that I am an expat.