Five Things I Don’t Miss About San Francisco.

After 2 years and 23 days – not that I was counting –  my family and I moved back to Singapore from San Francisco. In that time I don’t think I met anyone who didn’t love San Francisco when they visited or had spent some time working there

We’re not happy… unless you’re not happy

I find the best way to approach air travel with or without kids these days especially on any American airlines – United Airlines in particular – is to quietly and eventually get on the plane and say absolutely nothing to anyone unless explicitly spoken to.

To tan or not to tan.

Dublin weather in December may not immediately make you think of tanning, but a stroll along Grafton Street might make you think twice. You’ll see some very tanned people, even in the middle of a cold wet spell. I noticed this on a recent visit and it made me think about the Irish interest in being bronzed….

What being Irish means to me

I was back in Dublin with my family (British husband and two children) in March of this year. My husband tried to hide his Britishness as best as he could. Sensibly so, given it was during the Easter Rising celebrations.

Online Shopping – Clicks and Mortar

“Oh s**t! I didn’t buy a present for [child’s name redacted to protect the innocent]’s birthday party this afternoon.” 10.21am in our SoMa apartment, sometime in the recent past.

Drink: how to get it, how to drink it and how much to drink

Alcohol consumption is taken very seriously in the US. More seriously it seems than drug taking (if the pungent aroma of weed on many streets in San Francisco is to be taken as evidence) and this is a very strange concept for an Irish person to grasp. I knew before coming here that there was…

How Old Am I?

Time for a quick quiz. Based on the following how old do you think I am:

You say Potato, I say Po-tah-to

It’s the little differences that make living here strange. Sometimes it’s only the words we use to describe common occurrences that creates the difference.

The Only One on the Menu, Please!

When we first moved to San Francisco I found ordering at restaurants slightly stressful. It was often related to whom I could actually order from, not the person who saw us to our table, not the person bringing the drinks, not the person clearing the table.

(Re)Use it or Lose it

Singapore is a bit behind the US regarding recycling. People there don’t tend to sort out their rubbish in the same way as in America or even in the UK and Ireland.

Ordering from the Bottom up

There are some aspects of life in America that you can mentally prepare yourselves for, armed with years of Hollywood stereotypes.

Shopping by Name

Having made the transition to the US from Asia, it’s hard not to focus on the obvious differences, including national pastimes. Shopping is Singapore’s national free-time activity and having engaged in shopping here and there, one major differences stands out: the interaction between the shopper and the sales assistants.