Wednesday, 10 February 2016

10 Dumb Things You’ll Probably Do in England

For many people, Harlaxton was a big factor in deciding what college to go to. And why shouldnt it have been? This study abroad program not only allows you to live in a literal castle for four months, but going from living in the states to living in England sounds like a much tamer, less daunting transition than moving to other places on the map. And for the most part, it is. The food is similar, the weather is comparable, and practically everybody speaks the same basic language.

However, there are more differences than you might initially realize. You may occasionally come across a British phrase or two that will trip you up, and the UK way of doing certain things might blindside you at first. Coming to England presents some challenges, and is an adjustment for sure. Its normal to feel a little lost and silly as a foreigner at firstyoure definitely not alone! Heres a list of ten stupid things youll likely do within your first month here. (Not that Im speaking from experience or anything.)

1.      No matter how many times you learn about pub etiquette, youre going to forget to note your table number before you go up to the counter to order.





2.      Youre going to call biscuits cookies to a cashiers face.

3.      Someone will greet you with, alright? and itll catch you off guard, so youll just awkwardly say hi and give them a little wave.

4.      Youll be slightly surprised when you order fish and chips and french fries come out of the kitchen instead of Lays.

5.      Youll cringe when someone calls it the toilet instead of the restroom or bathroom. (It just feels wrong somehow.)

6.      Youll feel completely overwhelmed by the amount of monarchs you have to know for your first British Studies quiz. This will lead you to go on YouTube to look up songs that will help you remember said kings. You will find one written for children, and you and your roommates will jam to it until you know that song forwards and backwards. (Then King Stephen/its true, check it/Im Henry II/killed Thomas Beckett!)

7.      No matter how many tube maps you look at, youll still
      get off at the wrong stop. (Who knew Abbey Road station
      is different than the Beatles Abbey Road?)
8.      For a millisecond, youll forget that they drive on the left side of the road and be utterly convinced youre going to die in a head-on collision.

9.      Youll say something is fifteen
      dollars first, quickly correct yourself and change
      it to euros, and only then will you remember
      that they actually use pounds in England.

10.  Forgetting that some places in England use military time, youll accidentally book a train ticket for 8 in the morning instead of 8 in the evening. (20:00=8:00.)

And all of these things are okay!

Youre not here to feel smart: youre here to learn. Whats the point of traveling thousands of miles and spending thousands of pounds (which is basically millions of dollars with the sad, sad conversion rate) to get the exact same experience you could be having at home?

Even though you might feel a little lost and dumb in a new place, just remember why youre here. You came to Harlaxton College to broaden your horizons and experience new things, and theres nothing stupid about that.
Written by: Taylor Gates

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