Posts Tagged "Abroad"

5 major differences between Belgium and the US

Posted on Jul 8, 2013 | 18 comments

5 major differences between Belgium and the US

It’s hard as an American living abroad to not always compare Belgium to my home country or vice versa. I try not to present things too much in this way on the blog because often when comparisons are made people make an assumption that one way is better than the other. The truth is, all the experiences in my life are placed on a backdrop next to what I once learned to be the norm. I find things interesting now because they are different, but I want to be clear in saying that the differences are neither entirely positive or negative – they are just anders. So, without further ado, I give you five major differences between the way of life here in Belgium and my former way of life in the US:

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Broken Brain

Posted on Jun 17, 2013 | 4 comments

Broken Brain

I had another broken brain moment the other day. Which is nothing new, really, but unfortunately this one happened during an exam. Usually this frustration arises when I have to write in Spanish or in Dutch but this time it happened while I was writing in English.

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Wine in the supermarket – help yourself!

Posted on Jun 5, 2013 | 0 comments

Wine in the supermarket – help yourself!

On late Saturday afternoons we always head to the supermarket and stock up on the weekly groceries. As we were taking the usual path through the aisles on a recent Saturday, I noticed there was a cart set up to try out a new beer that the store was selling. The guy manning the cart was washing the glasses and it seemed as if he had finished with his job for the day. Sometimes there are moments like this when I have to remind myself that I would have found this an unbelievably strange thing only 3 or 4 years ago.

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Mijn Belgische Verjaardag

Posted on Jul 25, 2012 | 5 comments

Mijn Belgische Verjaardag

It’s hard to fathom that I’ve been living in Belgium for a year now, but it’s true. The year has gone unbelievably quickly and yet so many important things have happened in its course. Before we moved to Belgium, I envisioned myself writing many more blog entries to help create concrete memories of all the experiences. As I discovered, life takes up way more time. I feel that this one year mark in Belgium is a sort of milestone and it’s nice to look back and see all of the accomplishments that comprise the last year.

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Winter hibernation over

Posted on Mar 14, 2012 | 0 comments

Winter hibernation over

During the last few months OppositeOcean has been dormant. A pattern that I’ve noticed about myself during the last few years of my life is that winter often leaves me uninspired.

While I underwent a winter hibernation concerning blogging, many other things changed in my life. I also suffered what I will refer to as an academic coma as a result of trying to complete 5 levels of Dutch courses. Yesterday I received the fantastic news that I passed the ITNA exam, which is the final exam for level 5. Although I still don’t feel that confident with my ability to verbalize my thoughts in Dutch, it’s so very nice to be able to read Belgian news or be able to finally enjoy watching TV in Dutch. I am glad that the courses are achter de rug (literally ‘behind the back’  – over).

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