November 1996. The last time I have been to the Land of Milk and Honey – good ole United States of America. It was my graduation gift from my parents after grinding for almost 4 years in college. A well-deserved vacation.
Fast forward to April 2014. Marriage, two kids and two jobs later and I have returned.
A whole lot has changed since my almost two decades of being away from the States. And I have decided to blog and podcast my observations about the everyday things that I believe are peculiar to this country that are not yet available in our country. Or, it could already be available in the Philippines but not popularly known or heavily used as it is in the US.
I have entitled the episode, “Walang Ganyan Sa Pinas” as a parody of the early 2000 lube commercial where the balikbayan grandmother kept saying, “walang ganyan sa States”, ranting about the tough life in Manila compared to America. Please note however that I did not create this episode to complain or rant about life in the Philippines. It is more of me chronicling my observations of American life and expressing my own wishlist for my country.
Lesson #1: When asking an American where the comfort room is, you must NOT say “comfort room” or “CR”. You must say “restroom” or “bathroom”. It happened to me in Disneyland and I just got the puzzled look.
Here are the comfort room, este, American restroom paraphernalia that I found interesting:
The following are what I found interesting about this complex but convenient transport system in the States, including the items and peculiarities that Americans do to get themselves from point A to point B:
Car Pool Lane
Retail and Shopping Experience
Meanwhile, here are the retail stores or retail concepts that I found interesting:
Specialty Stores – Party City, BevMo, Aaron Brothers, Trader Joe’s, Best Buy, Dollar Tree, 99 Cent Store, Santa Fe Seconds Store
Outlet Malls – Nike, Oakley, Bass, Coach, Kate Spade, Cole Haan
Self-Service Supermarket – Fresh & Easy Supermarket
Sales Tax – 8%
Authentic Mexican Food: Cocineros Mexican Grill in L.A. and Santana’s in San Diego
Unsweetened Iced Tea
“Clean As You Go”
Tips for Waiter or Waitress – 15%
What American innovation would you like to see most in the Philippines soon? Please share in the Comment Box below.
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Photo Credit: JD Hancock (Blog Poster)