Culture clash amusement

I have something serious to say but I haven’t had the time to say it properly. In the meantime, I’ve had several amusing things happen in the last 24 hours that made me feel certain that globalisation is winning.

  • I called customer service for O2 for my iPhone, and the “you’re on hold” music was the US civil war song “When Johnny Comes Marching Home again” which I learned in 4th grade when living in Virginia and we’d have regular sing-alongs to “Songs of the South” including the classic Goober Peas.
  • I woke up earlier than I would like this morning due to my travel plans, and spent the first TWO HOURS of my day listening to some local group rehearsing the big “Oklahoma, OK!” song out my open living room window. I immediately sent a note to some of my former high school cast-mates from our production; we inevitably lost our ability to spell and ended up saying “O-K-L-H-A-M-O-A”
  • I arrived in the Netherlands to find that my hotel has a restaurant called the “Manhattan Steakhouse” which included lots of black and white Americana photos on the wall (not all NY-specific) and a higher-than normal (even for the continent) dose of outdated American cheesy pop music. Had a fantastic waiter who had heard of Minnesota (unusual for Europe!) and wants to go to parts of the US where there is a low population density, but also wants to go to SF. Spent some time chatting about Americans and gay marriage. Learned something about the history of the Netherlands. His family is from Dordrecht, same as my great-grandmother. Small world!

Will be here in the Netherlands through Tuesday morning, then back to normal for a few days before the fun of my American friend in Paris visiting for the weekend to be my “date” for yet another black tie ball. (I’m missing one on Monday by being away, last year I did two in one week this time of year!) Scotland next week–Glasgow for the first time (and Scotland for the first time)… any American bloggers out there?

Still waiting to hear on Switzerland the following week, if they don’t decide about the meeting soon, I might get spared that trip. Which would be good. I really don’t need to make it five ventures to the continent in 2.5 months… this trip is already the 4th time I’ve been on the continent since 2009 started, which tells me I’m travelling too much. But I’m certainly enjoying the culture clashes that come about from this global existence!

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2 responses to “Culture clash amusement

  1. What, you haven’t discovered “Long Aye-Lander in Glasgow”? You’re missing out.

    And there’s “Aye Wonder” too.

  2. It’s a funny thing. Even when the flights are short and the hotels are decent, travel for work just isn’t so much fun. When I was younger I couldn’t think of a more glamorous life.

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