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Thursdays things

10 things1. I’ve now been in America for 78 days. In all this time, I still have not learnt that the driver sits on the left of the vehicle here. Twice today I walked back to the car and went to the wrong side.

2. The line markings they have here in the road are crazy. This actually deserves a entire blog post in itself, suffice to say I miss thick white lines in the road that actually MEAN something and for there to be no confusion as to who has the right of way.

3. The post office here is the same as back home. There is always a queue. Line. Queue. Whatever.

4. The post office is not the same as back home. They do NOT have reinforced glass partitions here, so you can mug the cashier with ease. Partitions are reserved for the liquor store, remember?

5. The post office is the same as back home – I always get served by the grumpy guy who hates his job with a passion.

6. Ask an American to say the world “Quark” (As in ‘Quark XPress‘ – it’s a piece of software). Then get them to say the word Cork. You will be unable to tell the difference. I find this terribly amusing, when I really shouldn’t.

Evacuation Routes7. The local paper (Post & Courier) here this week published a really cool “How to escape the Low Country” map, in case of a hurriance. They turn the major highway (I26) into a one way road – i.e. the three lanes normally coming in to Charleston are reversed, meaning that you get six lanes of traffic driving out in case of an emergency. I hope I never have to experience this.

8. My sirius satellite radio is now really confusing me. As it’s time shifted meaning that I hear here at (say) 9am in the morning what went out at 9am in the morning back home, as apposed to ‘real time’ 2pm, it lulls me into forgetting that I have to phone everyone back home 5 hours ahead of when I want to. Apologies to everyone that I’ve called back home recently at very late times of the day.

9. I dropped someone off at Charleston International Airport this morning. “International”? Yeah .. by that, they mean Canada it would seem. Wooo…

10. As ever, I’ve let myself down at the final hurdle. I could think of so many things in the car earlier when driving back, and now I can only recall nine of them. Arse.

18 responses to “Thursdays things”

  1. Tsk. The Royal Mail is not the Post office. This is the link you want:
    I fear we’re losing you. Still, at least you can still spell arse correctly.

    A quark is also a subatomic particle.

    I have some American friends who can never get the hang of time zones. “Hello [name]…. I knew it was you because no-one else ever rings me at 4 in the bloody morning.”

  2. David says:

    Have you been to a drive-in post office yet? They do them in VA. Actually a look of your post seems to be about driving. What car is it? By the way one of my friends mentioned you, in the context of the underground record. You are famous!

  3. Chris - the American in London says:

    The designation “international” for airports means only that they have customs officers available to meet an international flight should it land at some point – not that there are actually scheduled international commercial flights. A bit misleading one would think.

  4. Paul says:

    Haven’t phoned me Geoff?! I’m hurt …

  5. Andrew says:

    For the record, in British English, “Quark” rhymes with “Noah’s Ark”

  6. Yaxlich says:

    Yaxlich would like to thank Geoff for teaching him more about America. Up until recently Yaxlich did not even know that they had the internet in America.

    Yaxlich will regularly check back to learn more.

    Kind regards,


  7. At least they have the decency to name the airport after where it actually is. London Stansted, I’m looking at you.

  8. I spent a year in the USA at the age of 18/19… after that, it took me at least ten years before I stopped automatically going to the drivers’ side (UK) instead of the passengers side. And I *still* say high school!

  9. zuzula says:

    OMG – has it really been 78 days?! blimey!

  10. Skarlett says:

    Quark, and cork sound nothing alike
    around here-maybe its a South Carolina accent thing?

    My Texas background is to blame for me saying hall and Hull the same.
    I apprently also say wolf

  11. I always walked to the right of your car when I was in england and you never let me drive!

  12. Richard says:

    British English is a tautology.

  13. geofftech says:

    I’m quite disappointed with the airport really… i always had the impression that to catch a local flight in the states was like catching a bus back home – you could just roll up 10 minutes before, hop on and go. I think it used to be like that, but not anymore…

  14. So five quick posts – one a day all this week – guaranteed

    Failed at the last hurdle!

  15. stroppycow says:

    By the time you next come back to the UK for a visit you’ll be doing the car thing the other way round and you’ll need to be reminded to look the other way before you cross the road 🙂

  16. Lisa says:

    I can say “quark” and “cork” differently – the thing is that I haven’t heard YOU say the two words. Maybe your enunciation isn’t as completely differnet as ours – or maybe we just don’t hear the subtley in one another’s accents. You could at leat disqualify one of these notions via a podcast….and what say you about Charleston Chews?

  17. geofftech says:

    I must .. do .. Charleston Chews! Yes. Candy bar of the week will be back, honest.

    Quark – “QWAARK” to me, where as:

    Cork – “KORK”.

    try that.

  18. Lisa says:

    Same here – to me 😉

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