The First Ten Days

Been kept rather busy setting up here, but here's a run-down of our first ten days in the USA...

Major adulting achievements

  • Got US cell phone numbers working (required three trips to the local phone store, plus many calls and a long Twitter conversation with customer services...)
  • Closed/settled most of my UK utilities etc
  • Bought two second-hand bikes (for $75 total - in need of a little TLC but functional - bargains!)
  • Rental application accepted for an apartment (moving in tomorrow) - the big one, yay!

Significant milestones

  • First visit to a restaurant where they pour you coffee automatically when you sit down, and keep it topped up without asking. It wasn't a diner but still... 
  • First purchase of a cable with a US plug on the end of it. This might sound crazy, but buying a 'native' US laptop charging cable was what really brought home to me that we'll actually be living here. 
  • First time waiting in line at the local Social Security Office (so G can get her Social Security Number, which is like an NI Number in the UK). It's our first contact with US federal bureaucracy since immigrating! 

Foods eaten

  • Mexican
  • Typical American
  • Vietnamese
  • Hawaiian (slightly weird fusion food) 
  • Japanese (sushi)
  • Italian (we craved something familiar!)
Mexican food in the USA is way more varied than what I thought coming from the UK; I've eaten fairly classic burritos and breakfast burritos, but also 'soft tacos' (apparently more authentic - basically served in small folded wraps like a loose burrito - with filling choices extending from the expected ones, through rarer beef cuts (cheek/tongue) to stewed beef eyes! 

My favourite Mexican dish so far has been huevos rancheros, except the version I had was way more epic and filling than Wikipedia's picture. 

Conversely, I've not seen or eaten nearly as much 'typical' American food as you might think. We've managed to avoid all the major fast food brands so far (I don't think I've seen a KFC or a Burger King outlet - and only one McDonald's). I had a hot dog on July 4th, and various deep-filled sandwiches with vast quantities of filling - that's about it. 

Finding vegetables in restaurant dishes is hard. Pretty much all the cuisines we've tried are very carb/protein focussed. Scurvy is a possibility, send limes please Britain. (I'm joking, don't bother. Citrus fruits grow very well here.)

Finding actual vegetarian dishes is even harder. Example: in one supermarket we visited recently, there was a choice of about 10 different ready-to-eat salad boxes (including sprinkles/croutons etc, dressing and so on) and none of them were vegetarian! 

Much as we've enjoyed most of our meals out, we can't wait to get our own kitchen and cook for ourselves.

Comments

  1. Hawaiian Restaurants! I don't know why but this seems so odd to me? The only Hawaiian distinct food I can think of is a Hawaiian pizza. Lol! Would love to hear more about the mission to gain a cellphone, it is such an easy thing to obtain in England, I am this curious! Also did you and Georgie have to interview for the apartment ? Or is this just a thing from Tv? Anyhoo, sounds like you are both having a fabulous time! Hopefully you will be able to get out on the bikes and enjoy the beautiful scenery soon 😊

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    Replies
    1. I will try to get a photo of my food if we go Hawaiian again. It was odd - basically a mishmash of cuisines from the far east, USA and Mexico (which makes some sense given where Hawaii is).

      I have expanded on the cellphone experience, see new post :)

      No interview for apartment, but we did have to fill out a proper written application (one each) including multiple references. (We'd thought ahead and got a written reference from our Manchester landlord, which may have helped.) We also had to give an extra month's rent upfront since they couldn't credit-check us!

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    2. This is all so interesting! I am really enjoying your blog 😊.

      There seems to be so much read tape though, even for the simplest things. Almost invasive. Definitely food for thought!

      Your organisational skills are definitely being put to good use though. Although I doubt this is little comfort lol! 😊

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