What I Miss About the United States

Even though there is an ever-expanding list of things that I love about living in France, there are some things I really miss about living the United States. Expanding off my post from yesterday, here is a list of the top ten things I miss about living across the pond.

1. The food
Specifically, I miss really amazing Mexican food. While I adore the food here in France, there are some things that are nearly impossible to find here (i.e. black beans, cheap peanut butter, etc.) that I am rather excited to return home to. On this subject, I miss having a kitchen with all the necessary tools to cook/prep meals. While I’ve become an expert soup and salad maker, sometimes I’d like to be able to make something like stir fry or a smoothie without wondering if I’ll (a) be able to find all the ingredients I need at the market/supermarket and (b) have the right tools create said dish.

2. Racial diversity
It’s not Clamecy’s fault–I am living in a very small town in the middle of rural France–but there is a huge lack of racial diversity here. That’s not to say that there is no racial diversity in France: I find Paris to be beautifully diverse in its’ citizens and tourists alike. However, it is definitely something I am excited to return home to in just a few months.

3. Not having the think about the time difference
It will be a glorious day when I can call or text a friend or family member and not have to calculate the time difference before doing so. Of course there will still be a time difference between me and my family/friends who live toward the west coast, but a 1-3 hour difference is a lot nicer than a 7-9 one.

4. Gym culture
I am fortunate to live in a town that has a salle de musculation that I love going to. That being said, I really miss the gym/health and fitness culture in the U.S. I miss a gym that is open on Sundays and for longer than from 17:00-20:00 on the weekdays. I miss having easy access to protein powder, a stair stepper, and a huge variety of weight machines. While it has given me the opportunity to get creative with my workouts, it is one of the things I am most excited to return to back home.

5. Driving
I know this completely contradicts my statement from yesterday where I said that I love not having to drive, but let me clarify. I miss driving in the sense that I miss the freedom it allowed me to have. Here, if I want to go grocery shopping at the supermarket, I either have to find someone to take me or I have to have at least two hours free to walk to and from the store, in addition to being efficient in the store itself (which is something I am truly terrible at). In the same sense, I miss having a bike. Walking is wonderful and it is something I really enjoy, but sometimes I want to get to and from places a little quicker than my right and left foot allow me to, you know?

6. Being a student
This one was a big one for me, especially in the beginning. I had spent the last 17 years of my life in the classroom as a student and it was quite the shift to fulfill the role of a teacher, rather than a student, when I first got here. While of course I don’t miss being stressed out about homework, tests, and papers, I do miss the structure of learning/discovering new things the way that being a student at a university allows you to.

7. My friends and family
As if this one needs explaining. I miss my friends and family back home so, so much and seeing them again when I step off the plane in the beginning of May will bring me a lot of joy.

8. The Texas sunshine
Texas, you spoiled me with your warm, sunny days (especially those days in the middle of winter)! The abundance of sunshine was most definitely something I took for granted back home. I am so looking forward to days where I can wear dresses and skirts without tights and be outside without a jacket.

9. My church family
They have my heart down at St. Timothy’s in Texas, plain and simple. I miss and love you all so much. On this note, I miss taking full communion every week. I have yet to understand why, in the land of wine, we only get the bread during communion here. I don’t go to church to get half-nourished; I come for the full meal, thank you very much.

10. Not having to use a wall adapter
It is the bane of my existence: I despise having to use and carry around a wall plug adapter. Why can’t the whole world just use the same system?? I feel like it would eliminate a lot of problems for travelers around the globe if we all used the same type of plug.


This list was so much more difficult for me to create than the one from yesterday, as there are so many more things I love about living in France than I miss from home, but thank you for taking the time to read it!

Until next time,

Michaela

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