Thursday, 2 May 2013

LIFE: Ask Me Anything - Part 2

So it's time for the more lifestyle responses, you can find the answers to part one - the more vintage based ones here. So here we go!

So many things you write about and say on twitter remind me of ... well ... me. So, I want to know, are you a Libran? 

Yes, yes I am - very much a librian through and through. Although I often feel I get rather ranty and carried away when I get headed about a certain topic on twitter which is often about politics, maybe I should, maybe I shouldn't, but it feels better getting it out of my system! 

How did you and Joe met?

Surprisingly you ask this, because I actually don't think I've ever mentioned how me and Joe met on my blog which is a little strange seeing I've blogged only a couple of months longer then I've actually known him. We - like many these days met online and neither of us were looking for love at the time, but we got chatting and I realized even just through msn and emails and so on that he was one special kinda guy and 9 months later we met up and that was that. Aside from explaining the truth to the visa people - they rarely bat an eye when you mention finding love online, we have numerous tales to describe how we met to others - to some they don't "get" the meeting online and falling in love lark so we just mention meeting at university or through work or something along those line. But yeah, he is one of the best things to have ever happened to me, he's a very special soul. 

What's the hardest thing about moving? And does it get easier? Did you settle in okay or was it a bit of a shock? 

Moving to the US was and still is a bit of a shock, more then I would have ever considered back in the UK - it's more cultural and political attitudes that are the shock more than anything and just having those "wow i'm in the US" moments. One of the hardest things was detaching myself from all the material things I grew up with and having to choose what to leave behind - I shipped some important things over before moving but all I brought with me was a suitcase and a backpack. Weirdly I felt sad about all the books I left behind, but luckily the most important things - the childhood teddy, photographs and a lot of the items from my memory box I manged to bring. As you reestablish and create a life for you in your new place it does get a lot easier - but there's moments that catch up with you and you stop and think. I feel very landlocked living in the US - even though I live in the Great Lakes region the sea feels very far away and the whole vastness of the US is very daunting at times and even though I've been around the south east of Michigan to Chicago and Pittsburgh I feel like I haven't seen anything. 

Top five things to do in Detroit?

I could fill a top five in just places to go and eat in and some of these places are in the suburbs as well as say downtown but it's hopefully a good mix.

My first would be to visit Belle Isle where you'll find America's oldest aquarium which is getting a new lease of life and there's nature parks and museums alongside great views of both the American and Canadian river fronts. Secondly to take a walk along the Riverwalk which runs along a good stretch (and is increasing) along the Detroit River - it's one of the few cities globally which doesn't have a road running along the river so it has great wide footpaths and gardens and also a nature park. Speaking of parks we have some great Metroparks out in the suburbs my particular favorite being Kennsington - you can hire boats, go for walks and feel like you're in the middle of nowhere. Back in Detroit if you head to Greektown (they also have a shop in Royal Oak) you must pop into the Astoria bakery which makes the most divine and incredibly huge desserts and cakes - you'll be a kid in a candy shop because you won't know what to choose! Lastly the Henry Ford museum complex in Dearborn is a great place to visit - they have everything you would ever want to know and see about American history and culture. 

Now Catherine asked a great load of questions about moving and life in the old USA so i'm going to break them all down!

What's the food you miss most?

Some days it's proper fish n chips, other days it's quavers or tartar sauce (US version tastes horrid) to pickled onions - luckily one of the closest stores has a good section of "English" food in their import aisle so I don't have to live without my brown sauce or decent tea bags. I use to miss naan bread but I got to baking my own so you kind of make do and mend. Proper sausages are certainly lacking over here though. I know a lot of British people have a dislike for American baked beans over Heinz but I have to say I do prefer my American sauce of baked beans


What's the biggest cultural difference between the USA and the UK you've noticed?

I would have to say it's probably between the gun debates and laws and religion. We all grow up very isolated against guns in the UK and here it's your born right to own one for that day when the government is going to turn on the nation and take all your rights away (i'm being serious people really do think that). And sadly every time a horrid event happens like Newtown it's never the time to talk about gun control and then the next event happens and it's still not the right time. I have a hard time working out why you'd feel the need to own a gun, I just don't think they solve anything but there you go. Secondly with religion it's a much bigger deal here and it's unsettling how much of a role it has in politics - I did write a big post about the religious differences between the UK and the US which explains it in a lot more details.

What are people's biggest misconceptions about you as a British person? 

Hmm this is a toughie - I can't say I've come across many or not at least ones said to my face although questions do generally go along the line of "are you from London", "have you been to London" questions about the Queen. On wider example a some on the right side of the politics field would and do see the UK as a socialist country (they think the same about Canada). So we're all socialist because of free healthcare . There was a recent facebook debate with a local newspaper posting on facebook a local cities choice of changing a road layout to adopting more roundabouts and people saying how they don't want to be turning European because of such an action. It was an interesting, and somewhat funny debate.

Are there any words or phases people call you up on and have you picked up any American sayings?

A lot of the time people don't understand me and it has got to the point where I just make Joe order stuff for me. I don't say tomatoes the American way (as in the toe-made-o) and that calls people up a lot. I don't recall really picking up any American sayings aside from calling a garden a yard really, although me and Joe are rather multilingual in British and American English terms i'm rather stubborn in refusing to use American terms.

So there you go - hopefully you all know a little more about me and my world. As always if you ever any questions or ideas on topics you'd love my to write more about (be it vintage to migrating) feel free at any time to drop them into a comments box!


  1. Fascinating read. So many people find love on-line these days. x

  2. This was really interesting to leave. I miss all my books too, even though I only moved from Ireland to Scotland! One day I will find a way to have all my books again! Also, Quavers. Yes. If you need someone to send you some, let me know! No-one should be forced to live without Quavers. So much cheesy goodness!

  3. Thanks for answering my questions! I am pretty interested in all the funny little differences between the UK and USA, and find it odd that though we're far apart geographically in lots of ways we're very similar, much more so sometimes than our neighbouring European countries. But in other ways we're very different. And never knew there were different bakes beans either ;)

  4. Aww! I love your story of how you two sweet!

  5. Oh its wonderful to read and learn more about you sweet...thank you for sharing.
    Have a perfect weekend filled with fun.
    love V

  6. What a great story about how you guys met. I wouldn't adopt American sayings either, lol.

  7. Joe is by far a special soul, meeting online is such a rare (I say rare, because I know people who have met people, who haven't been the one) and wonderful thing. (and I really don't get why people don't get it) xxx

  8. I have a British friend that lived out here for a few years in Junior High. She moved back after Junior High and about a year later came to stay here for a month during the summer. When she first came back her accent was so thick again that all of us Americans, her FRIENDS, could barely understand her lol.

  9. i love that you met your love online! my husband and i did as well and we wouldn't have had it any other way! thanks for linking up with us!

  10. Thank you for answering my question. What a sweet story. x

  11. love this post, so sweet xx