Monday, 18 November 2013

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

So we've reached a point where we've almost come full circle and find ourselves back in Arizona, with only one state left to properly do we'll be heading back to Vegas before we know it to sell up the 'burb and we'll be coming back home in less than a month. No doubt we'll add to this after but up until now, here's a list of the things that we love about America, the things we hate and things that are just plain ugly. Enjoy! 

Utah is amazing.

The Good...

  • Leisure – everyone here goes off huntin’, shootin’, fishin’ or wheelin’ at the weekends and there’s plenty of places to do all of the above. People know how to relax here.
  • State Parks / National Forests – there’s loads of them, always beautiful and always places to camp.
  • Coors
  • The prices – everything here is pretty cheap for us, especially electronics and clothes. Oh and car parts.
  • People are really friendly – and it’s not always fake. So much for American stereotypes
  • Motels – they may not be the nicest but they can be bloody cheap compared with what we get ripped off for a Travel Lodge in the UK
  • V8s – obviously.
  • Doughnuts (proper spelling) – nobody does doughnuts like the Americans, we can see why the cops are all over them
  • The sheer scale of the place – doesn’t matter if you’re here 3 months or 3 years, you’ll always be finding new places
  • Utah – literally everything there is beautiful. Go there.
  • The road life – it’s hard at times but it’s so cool waking up somewhere new and interesting every single day and being able to go explore it.
  • The western life – rodeos, pickup trucks, ranching, country music etc. We think it’s pretty badass. Plus Ben has got carried away with the dress code. When in rome?
  • Wheelin’ – getting a 4x4 was one of the best decisions we made, it is seriously so much fun! We’ve taken this standard Suburban through hell and back and it just keeps asking for more.
  • The ‘burb – it’s been our home, our transport, our storage.... it’s like me and Ben bought our first house together. I hope the next owner doesn’t want to put anything in it, because it’s filled to the brim with memories.
  • The stories – it never fails to amuse us the random stuff we get ourselves into, these are ones we’ll be annoying the grandchildren with for years. Until then, you lot.
  • Walmart – if you can think of it, they sell it. Genuinely this is a one stop shop for everything.
  • Jack Daniels – despite the huge volumes they sell, it’s still made here properly. This isn’t any factory produced crap, not a single drop leaves the premises until it’s tasted and deemed ready.
  • Sunsets – we’ve seen so many beautiful ones we’ve stopped taking photos of them, but wow!
  • The weather – I think we’ve been lucky at times but it was definitely good when we first got here. We’ve had two summers this year!
  • Country music stations – they play the same stuff over and over like back home, but at least it’s good! “In my country, we like to watch what we eat. Right up until we pull the trigger!”
  • Custard – because it’s always good.

Tree damage sucks.

The Bad...

  • Taxes not included – every state has a different rate of tax and it’s never added onto prices, so you have to do it in your head. I don’t like doing sums in my head.
  • Florida – it’s so hot and humid, makes it impossible to sleep at night outdoors
  • Terrible road signs – they’re either too late, too small or just non-existent. We advise the use of a sat-nav for getting anywhere important.
  • Light beers – seriously. No.
  • Florida – everything is trying to kill you.
  • Mosquitoes - mostly found in Florida.
  • Florida – toll roads everywhere with no warning that you’re about to go on one.
  • The sheer scale of the place – every intersection where you take one road, you’re missing out on three others. There’s so much more out there we wish we had time to see.
  • Proper meals – they just don’t exist here. Whatever happened to a good ole meat and two veg?
  • Salt and sugar – they put copious amounts of these in EVERYTHING. Literally you can’t avoid them.
  • Never spending long in one place – weirdly, it’s actually nice when we get to spend a few days somewhere and explore our surroundings a little. Just as we get to know a place we’re leaving again.
  • Bacon – it sucks here.
  • The price of beer – it’s generally pretty expensive unless you’re buying it from a local off licence.

Sup e'rybody.

And the Ugly...

  • Pot bellies. And love handles. American food has not done us well.
  • Epic farmer’s tans – we have no time for this proper sunbathing business
  • Road hygiene – good job the only thing we can smell is ourselves. Showers can be a bit hard to come by so you have to take them at every available opportunity.
  • Crashed cars – literally almost every car here bares a scar from some sort of battle at an intersection. It makes us nervous.
  • Homeless people – there’s a lot of them out here, when people go down they stay down and there’s no easy way back up.
  • Smoking inside – we banned it in the UK for good reasons, it’s not nice. Sort it out America.