(Alternate title: Jetlag makes everything funny)
Things I've noticed:
1. Everything here is weird.
To be fully inclusive, "everything" of course includes us. However, stuff here is so weird. Like, we went to the "express" Tesco's (grocery store), because they don't have big grocery stores in the city. The express version is like a large convenience store, designed for popping round to buy washing up liquid, and maybe grab an apple or two, some prawn-flavoured crisps, more McVities, and some meatballs in sauce for lunch. Normally, you just order your groceries online and they get delivered to you.
Let me break that down.
- "Washing up liquid", which we in Canada call "dish soap", is actually labeled "washing up liquid". Viv, I apologize.
- "Prawn" is apparently not only an acceptable, but a popular flavour for chips, which I now have to remember to call "crisps". Used in a sentence: "No, I would not like any prawn crisps."
- "McVities" - good call, Jolene! - were in our welcome basket, and since we had already finished the Goodbye McVities, they were welcome indeed! They are chocolate-covered digestive biscuits (cookies - why does everything need to be different???)
- "Meatballs in sauce" comes in a can, of course. And, according to said can, you can either heat it up in the microwave, or on the "hob". Luckily, there was a picture of a pot, which I presumed was for cooking; without that, I would still be looking for a hob. But, yes, a hob seems to be what they call a stovetop around here for no apparent reason. (Day 1 Win: I didn't burn down my flat when I used the so-called hob. Also, "No, I would not like to eat canned meatballs in sauce ever again.")
- This afternoon, I may have ordered my groceries online (will find out tomorrow between 8 and 12). It started out as a lot more fun than real grocery shopping, but quickly became frustrating because everything has a weird name. Courgettes and aubergines, my fanny!
2. Everyone does too have an accent.
Despite telling the kids over and over that it is now WE* who have the accent, I still can't believe that there will be a time that we not only understand what the locals are saying, but may not even notice how insufferable they sound. (Viv, I apologize again. I blame jet lag! Also, your husband broke my door and made me spill my wine, so...)
3. Abbey Road is both more and less inspiring than expected.
Well, there were no British accents hanging round the Abbey Road zebra crossing, that's for sure. And, when it comes down to it, it's just a crosswalk surrounded by tourists.** But the vast number of them, for a Monday afternoon, and the variety of languages and cultures represented really struck me. Of course, everyone tried to take their own version of the iconic photo (ours involves three kids going the wrong direction, dragging a very small dog behind), but it's still a Place, and it touches people from all over the world, no matter what language or age (qualify: older than 4, judging by my smallest associate). It's like Mat said that time, and he sure hit it on the head: "The Beatles were a really good band."
More adventures to come, and maybe photos too! (But maybe not - see #1.) Also, I expect that everything will look better with wine (which I also ordered online from the grocery store! I really hope I did it right!!!)
*Still sounds wrong, Captain!
**And us! We're not tourists! We live here! Ha!