The Differences Between Us By Christina Applebaum I'm have had quite an education the last week on how much of what I see as normal is just bizarre to someone from another country. I've had a house guest the last week and I assumed that since we are both from English speaking countries the differences would be minimal. Boy was I wrong! Let's start with the obvious, our cars and the way we drive. Well first of all she stands on the wrong side of the car waiting to be let in because to her our steering wheels are on the wrong side. Then once in the car I watch her cringe and hold on because to her it seems we may die at any moment (because we are driving on the "wrong side"). So anyway car rides have been fun and a source of laughter (for me anyway). Now for the less obvious things. She has never seen a squirrel - not even in photos, never seen ketchup (crazy right? I really thought everyone knew what ketchup was). I spent 15 minutes sitting next to her on the couch trying to figure out what the "greasy chips" were that she was asking for. Turns out she wanted to go to McDonalds and that "greasy chips" are french fries. I mean I really didn't think it would be this hard since English is the first language to both of us. More examples are the "mince meat" she keeps mentioning. When I hear mince meat I think of the British fruit pies you see at Christmas that don't actually have meat in them. As it turns out "mince meat" is ground beef (which if you ask me makes more sense than calling those fruit pies mince meat). According to her they have two kinds of cheese. One is called "Tasty Cheese" and it is their main cheese and the other is mozzarella for their pizzas (thank goodness I didn't have to explain pizza, she knew that one). I'm not sure I could live with only one cheese- especially one called "Tasty Cheese". Oh, and apparently the number of cheeses we have that are orange in color freak foreigners out. I mentioned a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and she reacted as if I had offered her peanut butter and tuna fish, I guess they think peanut butter is fine but putting jelly on it is just gross. So what we have resorted to doing is when she is saying something to me that sounds painfully like English, but makes so sense to me in the context shes using for it, we take to google. I simply say "show me" and she googles a picture of what she is talking about. It's quite funny actually and we laugh a lot! Having her here has reminded me there is a whole lot more to this world than the part I know!