No, I really don’t want or need it: more petite anecdotes about reverse culture shock



All I needed was some new socks to wear to work. That’s all I was looking for. It took me about 5 to 10 minutes to get in there, find what I was looking for, and to choose according to my needs. It’s not like I was walking around just looking at things even though there were sales and clearance signs blaring in my face. How rude. All I wanted was what I needed. That’s all, but try telling that to the cashier who kept insisting that I sign up for a rewards card (No thank you. I don’t come here often enough.), that I buy extra items that are on sale next to the register (No thank you. I just came here for the socks today), and that credit card that in her mind is the best thing on the planet (Really, no thank you. I don’t need it, and I don’t want it.) Then she made the moment even worse when I told her that I didn’t need a plastic bag for my socks, which I could clearly fit into my purse, and she then proceeded to give me a strange look. Excuse me for being environmentally conscious.

The wave of reverse culture shock comes in spurts, and it always comes from the most unexpected situations and places. This is what I’m discovering during this week as I try to readjust to what is supposed to be my home culture.

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Hindsight is 20/20: Your birth certificate

When moving to France, no matter what country you are from or what job you will be working, you will be required to have your birth certificate and not just a copy. You will need an original birth certificate to bring with you to France.

Before, all language assistants, including assistants from English speaking countries, were required to have their birth certificates translated and apostilled, a type of stamp that says that the certificate is officially official, like it’s super official. I’m still not sure that I fully understand what it is, but it’s a pretty important stamp.

However, now, at least American assistants don’t need it apostilled. I’m not sure as to whether or not language assistants from other countries need it apostilled. However, just to make sure, I would double-check this information, because I think it depends on the country you are from. You should be able to get this information from the information packet you were emailed or from the person in charge of your country’s assistants. It is also a wise idea to double check information, even if you are mostly sure.

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Why I choose to travel

Now that I’ve come back home from my expat adventure in France, I’ve had many moments of reflection. This past year, I’ve done more traveling than I could have ever imagined, and my hunger for travel has only grown because of it. Because I have traveled so much and because I do consider myself a travel junkie, many people have asked why I love traveling … Continue reading Why I choose to travel

What is this place?: the journey back Stateside

My journey back home to the United States was definitely quite the journey. When I booked my flights home, going back through Iceland turned out to be my best bet in terms of cost. I was able to get all three of my flights for around $550, which is quite cheap considering that I was flying across an ocean. My journey started at 6:00 am … Continue reading What is this place?: the journey back Stateside