Life

7 weird ways to survive a US heatwave

Please don’t revoke my Australian citizenship when I say this, but there’s been a heatwave in San Francisco this week. The mercury soared to 39c in some East Bay suburbs on Sunday – and San Jose and Redwood City weren’t very far behind. Of course, the whole of Australia is…

Posted in Expat Life, Life | Tagged , , , , , | 17 Comments

Expat birthday: celebrating my unbirthday

I sat down to some strange emails in my inbox this morning. Everyone gets those pesky online shopping newsletters, reminding you that your one duty as a human being is to amass as many “things” as possible. This morning, I got one wishing me a happy half-birthday and inviting me…

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11 best junk foods in the USA

Regular readers of Bright Lights of America already know that I spend a fair whack of my time whinging about how terrible junk food in the US is. Namely the chocolate. I don’t understand how anyone could enjoy Hershey’s. I may have misrepresented the array and quality of junk food on…

Posted in Expat Life, Life | Tagged | 33 Comments

Expat dilemma : stay or go?

Expat life is full of excitement and unexpected twists and turns. You experience the highs of having a whole new place to explore, possibly learning a new language and a new way of life. But there’s a downside to expat living as well, and it tends to rear its head…

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12 Weirdest things on sale in the US

America: where capitalism came to buy more stuff. You can purchase literally ANYTHING in this country, which throws up some very weird conundrums between what you want and what you actually need. I want a home defibrillator but do I actually need one? Probably not, but I can’t see into…

Posted in Finance, Life | Tagged , , | 60 Comments

Review: Hot Cross Buns in San Francisco

Hot cross buns. It’s just not Easter without them and when you’re living in San Francisco, they can be a bit of a challenge to track down. A challenge, but certainly not impossible, as I found out the other day, when I plotted a hot cross map across the fair…

Posted in Community, Expat Life, Life | Tagged , , , | 14 Comments

5 things you shouldn’t say to a new cyclist

Welcome to the wonderful world of cross training! I’ll be your host – the still very injured runner, turned very scared cyclist. Of course I use “cyclist” with a sly little smile and a nod to people who are actually able to ride a bike. Because I can’t steer straight…

Posted in Expat Life, Life, Running | 25 Comments

Songs that remind me of Australia

 I’ve found that the longer I’m away from Australia, the more I miss songs that remind me of home. I know that “those songs” be different for everyone, but I’ve compiled a list of my favourites that instantly transport me back to the sun, humidity and evenings spent with friends.…

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My Expat Story

The other day Swedish expat Sandra, who is adjusting to life in Boston after a big move from Zurich, tagged me in a post about expat stories. Sandra writes some funny and thought-provoking stuff about life in the US at her beautiful blog Going American, and asked other expats to…

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American English For Expats

 It seems a little unfair that I’ve explained Aussie slang to Americans but not American words to Aussie expats. Or any expats for that matter. It’s an oversight that I’m now correcting thanks to Eliza, who gave me numbers one and three to chase up. Without further ado, I give…

Posted in Expat Life, Life | Tagged , , , | 39 Comments