Thanksgiving Football shopping pumpkin pie fall leaves turkey dinner Family pilgrims blessings cornucopia peace love thankful
Thanksgiving Football shopping pumpkin pie fall leaves turkey dinner Family pilgrims blessings cornucopia peace love thankful
Thanksgiving Football shopping pumpkin pie fall leaves turkey dinner Family pilgrims blessings cornucopia peace love thankful
Thanksgiving Football shopping pumpkin pie fall leaves turkey dinner Family pilgrims blessings cornucopia peace love thankful
Thanksgiving Football shopping pumpkin pie fall leaves turkey dinner Family pilgrims blessings cornucopia peace love thankful
Thanksgiving Football shopping pumpkin pie fall leaves turkey dinner Family pilgrims blessings cornucopia peace love thankful
Thanksgiving Football shopping pumpkin pie fall leaves turkey dinner Family pilgrims blessings cornucopia peace love thankful
Thanksgiving Football shopping pumpkin pie fall leaves turkey dinner Family pilgrims blessings cornucopia peace love thankful
Thanksgiving Football shopping pumpkin pie fall leaves turkey dinner Family pilgrims blessings cornucopia peace love thankful

One empowered woman's struggle against the world
Monday August 19th 2019

London is not Orlando

mom says
Email posting is not working!

I don’t know why I am surprised but I am. I tested out posting by email and it seemed to work fine. As I sit here in Starbucks trying to figure out why it is yesterday’s post is not showing, all I can guess is that I did something wrong. Not sure what I did wrong but it must be something because no post is showing. So here I am going to try again and see if today’s post shows up.

I have been to England several times recently. Something I am noticing is the honor system they have going on in customs. Once you get off the plane and go through the first check, where an actual person checks your passport and asks why you are coming to the country, you head out to pick up your checked luggage. Now I don’t have checked luggage because I hate checking luggage (more on that another day). I get to proceed straight to the second part of customs and that is where they check your luggage and carry ons for any items you need to declare. You fill out a little card denoting whether or not you have anything to declare and if you do then you list it. You walk up to an opening with two hallways, which sometimes has customs agents standing outside and sometimes doesn’t, over head there are two signs directing you which hallway to go down. If you have items to declare you go down one and if you don’t you go down the other.

Here comes the honor system part. In all the times I have been to England recently I have had nothing to declare so naturally that is the hallway I proceed down. There is never anyone there. You walk by tables that can be used to search through your luggage but there are never any customs agents there to check. You would think they would at least randomly pull people aside and make sure they really have nothing to declare. I am not complaining really because it is nice to just be able to walk thru and skip waiting while someone goes through my stuff but in this day and age, I don’t know I would just think there would at least be random checks. Maybe it is because I worked for the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) at the Orlando International Airport and I have seen what you people put in both your carry-ons and your checked luggage.

Now that I think about it I can’t remember how it works going back into the United States so I will have to take note. Maybe the honor system is universal. Just for note Customs and TSA are not the same thing so even though I worked for one doesn’t give me privy to the other. Plus the Orlando airport used to bring International flights in through the air sides so every passenger was checked in through customs and then through TSA, trust me that pissed off a great deal of passengers. The airport has since changed things up so that double check is eliminated but I will definitely have to take note how the customs side is done on the way back.

Starting next year, which is just around the corner, I will be back and forth between Orlando and London. Let me just tell you some differences between the two.

The weather is crazy different. First in the US we use Fahrenheit and in England they use Celsius. Right off I have to do math conversion to figure out how cold I am. Right now, mid September, in Orlando the temperatures for the day range from the low 70s to the low 90s Fahrenheit. In London, the temperatures for the day range from the low 40s to the mid 50s Fahrenheit (not going to confuse you with Celsius). So you can imagine that the shorts and tanks tops that were common everyday wear right now in Orlando, aren’t cutting it in London. I have seen travel guides that mention bringing a light sweater or jacket. Now for a Florida girl when the temperatures are in the 40s and 50s a light sweater is not going to work. Will definitely need to update the wardrobe.

Travel is different between the two cities. Orlando doesn’t really have mass transit. There is a bus system but that is all. In London there are buses, trains, and subways (the tube). I have to say that I have fallen in love with the mass transit system in London but I will still get a car. For a visit though you don’t really need a car unless you plan on traveling way off the beaten path. It is actually quicker to get around using the mass transit than it is to drive. You can purchase an Oyster card which is just a prepaid card that is good on the buses, trains and subways. With the card you just fill it up, run it over the sensor and get on whatever you need. There is a cheaper rate through using the Oyster card rather than paying for individual trips. Plus if you drive in London during the week during certain hours you have to pay an additional fee. This is due to congestion so I am told.

The food is different but not scary different just different. I have found shopping in the grocery stores in London that the fresh meats and poultry are smaller. Chicken breast are really small and steaks even smaller. They have probably already outlawed the use of hormones in their livestock in England unlike the US. There is no high-fructose corn syrup in the products either which makes the sodas taste different. I am told in England the high fructose corn syrup is banned, good for them. In the US, the stuff is in everything. The potato chip flavors are very different and they are called crisps not chips. Sausage is very different from what I am used. There is a love of beans and french fries (chips to the English). Standard breakfast includes chips and beans. I will get used to the food just interesting to see all the differences.

The language is different as well. I am learning the different terminology. It is amazing that two countries both claim to speak English but are so different. I ran into this before but still find it funny that adults in England call each other naughty girl and naughty boy. In the US, usually there is a sexual undertone to being called a naughty girl or boy but not so in England. There are some other names that people call each other in England that are common and not offensive at all but in the US are very offensive. It is taking some getting used to but I will get there. I was already exposed to a lot of the terminology by the latest man in life being he is English but I still think I need to invest in an English to English translator.

It is not a major culture shock like it was when I moved to Saudi Arabia as a child but it is different. I will manage and am finding with each trip over to London I get more and more acclimated. The first time the kids come over will be interesting to watch though. The man in my life would laugh at me and now I will kind of get an idea of what he was seeing in me with the kids.

Didn’t do much today but plan for all the stuff I need to get done over the next two weeks. It is my hope to post daily but so far I am not doing so good. Hopefully this post will make it and I can figure out what has happened to yesterday’s post.
momwine glass

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