How you going? 

Anytime you go to a different country you will most likely experience culture shock. Especially if you choose a country with a language barrier. Now when you think of Australia, you think, “noo what shock?”, all because they speak English (yes.. They speak english down here). So naturally everything must be normal, plus everyone knows Australia is just another US but a few years behind. NOPE, you’re wrong. I mean of course Italy was a huge shock to me, but those Italians pretty much culturally served everything on the platter within the first few weeks of being there and everything made logically sense. Australia is still shocking me verbally after five months of being here and so I thought I’d finally share a little bit about it.

First off it is not “what” when you didn’t understand what I said, it is “pardon me”. If you think about it, when someone is talking to you and you can’t hear them or you missed what they said, saying WHAT sounds so rude. I love pardon me. So formal! My favourite is using “I beg your pardon” in a sassy way when the kids talk back! Haha

Anyway, we drive on the other side of the road over here. Yep, I had to sit on the other side of the car and remember to “Keep Left”. I remember when I first got here I hadn’t physically driven a car yet, but I was in a shuttle bus taking me to the Gold Coast. I was looking out the window in my hazy sleep deprived mode and every time we passed a car I freaked out! I glanced over at the passenger on their phone or sleeping and thought it was the driving side! It was crazy at first! Learning to drive on that side of the road was a whole new challenge. All of my life I’ve always known to keep right, but now I keep left! Round-a-bouts were terrifying and Australia has these weird six way intersections without stop lights you just have to know who goes and when to yield!! I got used to it quickly and now when I watch shows based in the US I think to myself “Hey they’re on the wrong side (the right side)”. I’m all messed up. You also wash your windscreen with your windscreen wipers and stick the groceries in your boot! Having some issues with your car? Please pop your bonnet!

Quick! How do you turn on a light? You flick it up to turn in on right? Well, don’t worry Australia likes to be different and since they are on the opposite side of the world, why not have the switches opposite? Oh and the toilets flush the other direction too! And the drains!

Remember being a kid having to go to the dentist and having to receive that foamy stuff to swish around for a minute? I always had to tell the assistant that I was not allowed to have it and then she would proceed to give me the look. (You know the, “Your mom is wrong” look.) Or in elementary school taking the fluoride pills (I did try to sneak a pill or two because I just wanted to be included)? Well, don’t worry they just add it to their water supply around here, and I don’t really get a choice now (Sorry mom!!).

Food is another interesting one and I still have trouble deciphering. One of my first mornings here BJ kept asking me for capsicum for his morning tea. First off he was two and I had a hard time understanding him especially with his accent. So I had to keep asking what he was trying to say. I felt so bad while he looked at me like I was stupid because he was saying the word so clearly and I just didn’t know what to do. I thought maybe it was some kind of tea, but why would he want tea? Eventually Kristy (the other nanny) woke up and was able to help me locate the bell PEPPERS! I know what you’re thinking, “Why the heck does this little boy want some bell peppers?” (Because the two-year-old eating bell peppers makes much more sense). Yeah I don’t know the answer to that either, but at least I know what a capsicum is now and that snack time is referred to morning or afternoon tea! I also cut up some rockmelon that day which we like to refer to this orange melon as a cantaloupe! Lo and behold I was yet again confused for dinner that night when we needed ketchup for our sausages and there was none in the fridge. Only this red tomato sauce, but we weren’t having pasta! Heck no I don’t want pasta sauce on my bun! Oh wait.. Tomato sauce IS ketchup. My bad..

Like I said, I am always confused! Australians are always shortening things and coming up with crazy names, but then maybe they think Americans are the weird ones. I really quite enjoy the challenge of having to figure them out because it keeps me on my toes. I also indulge in getting to use funky words with the kids and hearing them say adorable things! I really do love culture shock and the puzzles of the world.

I have even gotten a few people asking me if Australia speaks English.. Well, yes they do, but it’s a little strange!

I have compiled a list for you!
(I’ll put my terms on the left)

Parking Spot – Car Park
Truck – Ute
Bell Peppers – Capsicum
Eraser – Rubber
Elevator – Lift
Rent – Hire
Tape – Sticky Tape
Cookies – Biscuits
Fries – Chips
Popsicle – Ice Block
Gas Station – Petrol Servo
Shopping Cart – Trolley
A lot – Heaps
Ketchup – Tomato Sauce
Meals – Tea
Chicken – Chook
Windshield – Windscreen
Snack – Morning/Afternoon Tea
Garbage Can – Rubbish Bi
Duvet – Doona
Diaper – Nappy
Sweatshirt – Jumper
Icebox – Eski

Oh and heres some photos ❤

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