18 August, 2015

Oh right, that's a thing!

I am back in the United States! After an arduous two-day journey on trains, buses and planes, I'm finally here, and even after a week I'm still a little jet-lagged. I haven't really had time to rest much until yesterday; a few days after arriving I turned around and got on another bus to go visit my sister in northern Vermont for the good part of the past week. Now that I can finally sleep in a bed again and have some time to relax, it's time to turn my attention back to my mildly neglected blog!

In the days that I've been back I've already been confronted with many things that I had completely forgotten about because they don't exist in Germany. In no particular order, here they are:

  • huge parking spaces
  • the waiter/waitress at a restaurant telling you the "specials" before you order
  • the waiter/waitress bringing the bill as soon as you are done eating
  • huge pickup trucks (I hadn't really forgotten about this one but it's standing out to me a lot)
  • people having no idea how to use the left lane properly on the highway
  • mosquito bites (they're so itchy!)
  • covered bridges (these are a New England thing, I think)
  • paper towels that are more paper than towel

This is a normal occurrence in America.

I've also noticed many other little things like this that I forgot to write down and have since forgotten. For the most part, though, these things have already started to blend into the background. It's amazing how quickly something can go from attention-worthy to totally mundane.

I've also been able to experience some things that I had been sorely missing in Germany, such as American craft beers! When I was visiting Lindsay we spent two days in Burlington, Vermont, a small city with a surprisingly large number of small local breweries. In an afternoon of beer-tasting we were able to visit four different breweries, all located within walking distance of each other, although I'm stretching the term "walking distance" a bit. I'll write about this in another post.

Preview of what's to come!

Ordinarily I would also be looking forward to typical American foods like burgers, but I have a dilemma: I recently became (mostly) vegan, so I have to decide if I will forego an amazing American food or if I will cheat. I could get a veggie burger, but somehow those just aren't the same. They can be tasty, but they are just a different food.

I'm also looking forward to a burrito from Chipotle. Luckily Chipotle has vegetarian and hopefully vegan options, so that will be no problem.

There's my quick update for now. Now that I've finally recovered from jet lag I will try to crank out a few more posts about my time in the U.S. Coming soon, brewery visits!


  1. I can totally relate to the waiter/server differences! In Germany, the waiter hardly talks to you, but here they are so chatty haha :)

    1. They are chatty and they also usually have a whole monologue that they have to give you, with all their specials and asking if you've been there before and if you need help with the menu, lol!

  2. Hi Danielle! I found your blog when I was reading another persons blog who lives in Iceland. Anywho, just want to say I love your blog. My husband is military and we spent almost 8 months in Stuttgart and have been back several times as well. I absolutely love Germany for many of the same reasons you mention. The picture of the enormous pickups had me LOL! I love all their festivals, flea markets, their easy and clean public transportation, the food, I could go on! Enjoy your time there and keep posting great pics! -Elisha

    1. Hi Elisha! Thanks so much for reading, and I'm glad you enjoy my blog! I love hearing from others who appreciate Germany as much as I do. There's just so much to love here :)

  3. Hi. I've really enjoyed reading your blog about expat life (I'm an expat myself, albeit in England). Elements of this post rang true for me ... particularly the huge traffic lanes and big vehicles. One I noticed during my last visit home to the States was that, while dining out, the servers are constantly bringing new (ice-filled!) drinks whether you asked for more or not. It was such a departure from how it is in the UK. I don't know how that goes in Germany.

    1. I'm glad you've enjoyed my blog! The thing with the new ice-filled drinks doesn't happen in Germany either. You pay for each refill and there are usually only a few ice cubes in the glass, if any. When I go back to the US I have to remember to ask for no or little ice, but I usually forget and end up giving myself brain freeze! The sizes of the drinks are also smaller in Germany and there are always standard sizes. Small is 0.3 liters, large is 0.5. In the US the sizes can be all over the place, which I never noticed before I lived in Germany.