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Things That Only Make Sense In Your City/Country

Discussion in 'Teaching abroad' started by wrldtrvlr123, Dec 17, 2010.

  1. wrldtrvlr123

    wrldtrvlr123 Occasional commenter

    Let's hear about some of the things that you see, say or hear on a regular basis where you are living that wouldn't make sense anywhere else. I'll start.
    Two men walking down the street in Beijing:
    First Man: Damn. I just stepped in dog poop.
    Second Man: Optimist!
  2. Maybe people haven't replied to your post because it takes a bit of time to think about what it is that really makes your country soooooo different from home.

    Well, anyway, here's one that took me by surprise in it NE USA....static....it's well known for being humid in the summer but really you can't even make a snowman here in the copious amounts of snow because its so dry!

    I have developed a phobia about touching anything metallic. Let me make a list from the moment I walk into my apartment: door ****, coat hanger, tv remote, fridge, cooker, taps, heater, my husband, things that hold the carpet down, laptop, mouse if its within 2 inches of the laptop.....really its ridiculous!!
    My American friends chortled and tell me to just go out and buy some static spray. "Static spray"? Do they even sell that in the UK?! Never heard of it!![​IMG]
  3. wrldtrvlr123

    wrldtrvlr123 Occasional commenter

    Thank you trying to save my ill-received thread from the oblivion of page 2 and beyond. I did think I would get at least a few drunken ramblings about donkey carts, bowebs or baksheesh from some of our Egyptian friends, but, sadly no.
    Yes, the static shock effect could be shocking. It was much worse in NY then in FL. I have seen the static spray for clothes, but never thought about it for self-protection.
    In anyone wondered, the reason for my optimist comment is that babies here in China do not wear nappies. They have these marvelous split pants and mothers just hold them out over the street or sidewalk and let nature and gravity take its course.
  4. In Tibet thay insert babies into a yak skin bag up to the waist and fill it with yak dung to soak up the bady's pee and poo. You can't have a split in your pants at - 30 degrees.
  5. *baby's
  6. Christopher  Curtis

    Christopher Curtis Occasional commenter

  7. stopwatch

    stopwatch Lead commenter

    In the Middle East (Saudi, Egypt and now Dubai), driving along and being overtaken by a pick up truck with a camel tied into the bed of the truck.
    In Cairo, bread was deliverd, carried by cycle, on the head of the cyclist, whilst he held on with one hand. Doesn't sound too unusual? the bread tray was about 6 feet long and 3 foot wide.
    In India, whole families (eg Mum, Dad, Granny, 4 kids) all being carried along on 1 moped.
  8. Connecting appliances to electricity by plugging the frayed end of the electric cord directly into socket. At school. In classrooms. [​IMG]
  9. stopwatch

    stopwatch Lead commenter

    On the subject of sockets, in Saudi we had combinations of 120v and 240v in the same room along with 2 oin, 3 pin and variations of round holes and square holes.
    It was like a game of chess working out which appliance would fit in where, and what voltage setting to put it on.
  10. Living in Canada and coming from the UK that sounds quite dreamy. Every appliance, computer, electrical device I own would work in one room, something I have not experienced before.
  11. wrldtrvlr123

    wrldtrvlr123 Occasional commenter

    In Alex, Egypt: Electrical outlet in our 1970's vintage apartment catching on fire and blowing a fuse. When the "electrician" came to fix it, he saw that a breaker could not be reset so he "fixed" it by finding a piece of wire on the floor and bypassing the breaker.
    In crossing the corniche road (always an adventure) we accidentally cut off a donkey cart crossing the other way and he stopped short, which ended up with my son getting literally kissed by a donkey.
    In Germany:
    Going to a little indoor water park where insurance liability was not apparently a concern as they let people go down a huge winding slide 2,3 and even 5 at a time like trains holding onto to each other, which looked odd at first but was actually a lot of fun. Seeing the girls and even young women turn their suit bottoms into instant thongs in order to be able to slide faster [​IMG]
  12. The donkey story reminds me about one of my favourite lodges in Zambia, where a hippo from the (very) nearby river regularly walks up the bank to avoid its more belligerant water-mates, and plonks itself down right in the middle of the entrance hall. I remember having heart failure one morning as my daughter leapt off her chair at the dining room table and headed directly for contact with the hippo. Thank goodness I am equipped with parental superpowers that enabled to me move at lightening speed to catch her. I still get nightmares. Most dangerous animal in Africa...
  13. wrldtrvlr123

    wrldtrvlr123 Occasional commenter

    Yes, I used to love stumping my classes with the question, Which animal kills the most people in Africa every year? Personally I've never been closer than standing on a dock a few feet above the water and tossing clumps of grass into a hippo's mouth (at a cheesy but enjoyable animal park in Egypt). I was even too nervous to put my son on the Zebra's back for a picture or let the wandering ostrich get too close.
  14. bbibbler

    bbibbler New commenter

    Seeing a Bicycle light bouncing around at a height of about 6 feet and realising too late that it is connected to the tail of an elephant.
  15. There was one of these in my new school during the week before the kids arrived. It snaked right across the corridor. The first time that I saw it, I gaped a bit, shook my head and carefully steped over it. At that precise second a siren went off and scared the bejesus out of me for a split second.
    Other stuff you don't hear back home: Staff all saying that they hope it will hurry up and rain so that we can have a few days off. Rumours about everyone being sent home from school early because a visiting dignitary is coming to town. (Yes, it does happen.)
    The waterslide story reminded me of a school trip to Mexico. We were all on the top storey of a double-decker trolley/bus/tram thing. Our abs all got a great workout as we ducked and dived all over the place to avoid being decapitated and/or shocked by the overhead power lines - which are not precisely overhead when you're on said top storey.

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