Well I have been home now for over two weeks and I have just gotten back into my American groove. This is not a dance move I use to employ down at the Beachcomber in college but the way of life that I had to get re-accustomed to during my vacation home. It has been a trip for me to come back to California after seven months away, these months being the longest stretch I had ever been away from home. These last two weeks have brought me back to my roots, and the reverse culture shock has surprised me
I spent six months in England in 2003, but as I look back on it this tour lacked in comparison to the change in lifestyle that I have experienced in Germany. I treated my time in England like a party time vacation, in contrast I have treated my new home as a place that I might be spend a couple of years of my life. Insert language and culture differences into my morphed mentality and you have a recipe for a new cultural aptitude. I was aware of the changes that had taken place within my body, head and routine but I was not ready for them all to come in front of my open eyes all at once.
I took the first step of the groove when I entered Safeway and was overtaken by the mere selection of cheddar cheese. After debating for several minutes between 10 different brands of mild, medium or sharp I returned home and realized that my family house currently has 3 inhabitants, but 5 cars. The list of conflicting cultural occurrences stretches on like the ballot for the last California governor’s race, and I could probably write a blog about every single one.
Well as soon as I am fully accustomed to this faster paced individually charged lifestyle here it is time for me to return on Monday. The days here have been great and I have spent most of my time with my family, but the weather has reminded me more of Germany than California. We have had over 15 inches (38 cm) of rain since I have been home. So much for going back to sunny California, now its back to beer and brats, and bitter cold…………