No matter how similar you think one place will be compared to where you are, there are always going to be things that surprise you. Of course there has been some culture shock here. The first would be food of course. To help our group get used to cooking, we attended a cooking class, where we made some Thai green curry chicken. While it was cool to do chop up everything we used (for free), I don’t see myself at the store buying peppers and chives.
While we do cook back at school, we usually shop for the week or even for the month, and just freeze certain foods. Here, because we walk everywhere, it is impossible to do so. I feel like I am in the grocery store every other day. While we do cook for ourselves, there are times where the group is proved with meals. These included sandwiches during orientation, and a buddy meal, where all of the semester students could meet the students who studied here last semester and will be here this semester as well. I usually love sandwiches, but these were english sandwiches. They were cold sandwiches that included chopped meats, and mystery spreads. All I can say is that I experienced it, and it’s something to check off my list. The buddy meal was at an all you can eat buffet that included foods from all over the world. Can’t go wrong with pasta and chicken and rice.
Actually, I take that back. You can. After finally finding a grocery store, my flatmate and I purchased pasta sauces, both which tasted like absolutely nothing. I still have nightmares of my alfredo sauce that tasted like mayo, even with the amount of salt and season mix I added Since then, we have been buying a variety of seasoning to help in anyway we can.
The best part about the food here would be the porridge. As a huge fan of oatmeal, and having no food the first morning, my flatmate and I found our way to a cafe near our flat that served huge bowls of porridge for a few pounds. I see myself in this place often.
As far as food, we are learning where to shop (apparently we’ve been going to the most expensive supermarket around here), what to share (milk, bread, anything that spoils quickly), and where the deals are (Grainger market, sack of potatoes, 50 pence/75 cents in America). I’ll be back at Tesco tomorrow to buy some more bread to make my new favourite…toast!