United Kingdom

My first British wedding on a very British Summer day

Weddings are happy occasions. Although a wedding of my own is nowhere in sight, I don’t mind them and have long since gotten over the life-envy that social media tends to create.

This was my first time I attending a wedding in a different country of my own! Being a traveler at heart, it is interesting to learn about different traditions and customs for other cultures, and in this case how British people do weddings.

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International habits I’ve picked up from living abroad for 4 years

They say that you become most like the people that you spend the most time with. What happens when those people are always changing? Or maybe not always changing, but change periodically?

I’ve become an experiment of sorts in this, as over the last few years I’ve been surrounded by a mix of people from different cultures. Living in Asia for 2 years and then Europe for 2 years saw me picking up little habits here and there, some of which I find hard to shake off now that I’m Stateside again.

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[Photo Journal] A summertime romp through the famous Kew Gardens in London

What if any life problem could be solved by taking a walk through an English garden? That’s a lovely thought. I wish it were true. If only I were a Jane Austen character. That would also be a win for #diversity! Woot! As far as gardens in London go, this one can’t be beat!

This summer I had the chance to spend a few days in my old haunts in London. On the top of my list was heading back to check out the Royal Botanic Gardens, aka Kew Gardens. What did I do? I did some strollin’, that’s what.

Kew Gardens sundial

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Graffiti art of face on side of building Street art in Camden Town, London, how I feel sometimes about British English

An American’s guide to British English or how to not feel like an idiot in London

Not all English speakers use the same terms and slang, just like how in many places where people speak Spanish there are differences. There are a few embarrassing ones, and a few that make your head tilt sideways and go “huh.” This is for thos people asking what’s the difference between American and British English.

I’ll try to add to this list as I go along, but here are the main ones that I’ve discovered in the last year.

The list follows this format: [British word or phrase] = [what it means in American] with my personal notes in italics.

Day to day phrases

You alright? = How are you?/How’s it going?
It took me a few months to realize that they weren’t questioning my mental or physical state or making fun of me, but were just opening up the conversation with a general greeting.
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[Photo Journal] Adventures in Yorkshire, England

Yorkshire! Yeah! I went in May to visit a friend who was about to move to London, and we did a bunch of cool things. These are some things to do in Yorkshire if you are going for a short trip.

Among the highlights were seeing the train station where the students got out for Hogwarts in the Harry Potter films, kinda seeing some puffins (flying around along the cliffs), and generally having a blast with a good friend.

View of field from train window

I took the train up, where my friend picked me up. I got to see the yellow fields on the way there! Then we took a nice walk through some fields and forest.
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Volunteering at a huge week long sporting event #volunteerlife

What is it like to be an insider at a big sporting event? I had my first taste of that last month when I was a volunteer for the World U23 Ultimate Championships. Need an excuse to travel? This could be it!

Ultimate is a great sport, full of people ranging from your stereotypical hippie to your nearly semi-pro elite athlete. You can find leagues, pickup, and tournaments for all levels of players and seriousness. That’s what I love about this sport, everyone just loves to play and meet other people who also love to play.
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