What I learnt in Washington (well some of it)

– Washington is pretty wet, though also very pretty. It differs a lot across the nearly 500 mile wide state – from lush forests in the west to mountains and then drier plains in the east, with lots of farmland and wheat fields in-between.

– Americans don’t drink Americanos; they drink weak filter coffee and think Starbucks is good coffee. Cafe Nero wouldn’t stand a chance here.

-America has some things which are much better than in the UK: Ziplock plastic bags, pre-mixed peanut butter with anything, customer service of any kind, supermarket check-outs (no self-serve, bags packed for you, a smile).

-on some things the jury’s still out in my mind – especially gas stations. In the US you can leave the pump whilst it’s still pumping petrol into the car/van. This means sometimes people drive off still attached.

– there needs to be more consistency about the location of bathroom light switches in hotels; in the bathroom, outside, behind the door, by the main door. Just choose one! [I prefer outside the bathroom]

– on the plus side US hotels all have ice machines, we need more of these in the UK.

– being asked if you want to borrow some ‘pants’ or that you have wet ‘pants’ when what is meant are trousers will never lose the giggle-factor for me, as with ‘porta-potty’ and ‘fanny pack’.

– nothing smells worse than a dead animal festering in water.

-if you’re British you never need to show ID; not in hotels for rooms, not for anything. [Which is lucky as my driving license is currently AWOL and passport packed  at the bottom of a bag]

– there’s so many more fast food chains in the US than Europe.The heirarchy seems to be: Subway, Arbys, Wendy’s, Taco del Mar, Taco Bell, Burger King, MacDonald’s (the order of these is very much up for debate – we had 10 mins on it over dinner), Zips, Jack in the box, KFC, but then there’s some regional ones as well like ‘5 guys burgers and fries’, and of course all the pizza chains. I found out tonight there are more Subway outlets then there are McD’s; but McD’s still outsells subway.

[Though I don’t really eat fast food in the UK so maybe I’ve just missed a few chains]

2 responses to “What I learnt in Washington (well some of it)

  1. Eileen Bradley

    Do I detect you have had some problems with light switches over there?!!
    Nobody likes to do one’s business in the dark! And frustrating if you are on the ‘run’. What’s with all the peanut butter? You didn’t have it as a child, is this why you now love and crave it? Looking forward to hearing more comparisons. Much love Mumxx

  2. Fast food chain hierarchy? … I’m surprised James hasn’t commented!

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