Here comes part 2 of the differences series 😉 Enjoy it!!
The bus system in Oxford is quit a topic to write about. First thing: When you are at a bus stop, you can’t find out where the bus will stop. (other stops). You simply see something like „City Centre – 10 Min – Woodfarm”. Without any reference if this bus now stops at St. Clemens Street for example. Then the people queue to enter the bus. They also hold their hand out to make sure the bus stops. During the ride, there is no display or voice that tells you which is the next station. (If you are a foreigner you don’t really have a chance to know when you need to leave the bus!!) When you leave the bus most of the people say thank you to the driver. I already knew this from my stay in Broadstairs last year. A thing I like about the buses here (yes there is something 😉 ): They are double-decker!!!
The cinema is pretty much the same as in Switzerland. Very expensive popcorn (snacks in general), a lot of advertisements at the beginning and so on. But there is no break in the middle of the film. After “Dr. Strange” I haven’t really thought about it. As they skipped the break again in “Fantastic Beasts” I asked the trainees and they agreed that there is usually no break during the film ;-).
You work a lot less here. A 100% job is about 36.5 hours a week. That means ca. 5 hours less than I worked before. I appreciated the additional free time that I gained through this. The point is, however, that the people here also earn less than we do. But anyway, I think that less working hours lead to more work-life balance and better employees (it is just an assumption – no idea if it is true 😉 )
- Bread – usually toast, sliced and wrapped in plastic, they don’t really have cross bread here!
- Spaghetti – out of a can? (I haven’t tried them!!)
- Ice cubes – you can buy packs of ice cubes at Tesco’s. (Seriously?)
- Toblerone – The 150g Toblerone bar has only 9 peaks instead of the normal 12!
Names – Du-Form
It is commonly know that people here don’t really have a Höflichkeitsform. So I really like it to just say you to everybody. Also in emails (business conversations) you can write “Dear Sally” and there is no need to make it a Miss or Mister!
In every supermarket you find self-checkout machines. They speak with you and guide you through the process of scanning items and paying. The thing is you need to put you things on a specific place (right or left from the machine) and if you don’t do it the machine will tell you “Please put your items on the baggage area”. So you can’t just keep your one sandwich in your hand or pack it in your bag, you need to put in on the machine 😉 I have to say after a few times using them my conclusion is that they are very handy although they sometimes annoying when the keep saying “place your items in the baggage area”. 😉
Road crossings (for pedestrians)
Way 1: There is a traffic light. You have either to wait five minutes, cross the street with eagle eyes and luck, or you have 10 seconds to run to the other side 😉 It is somehow funny, the traffic light is the same as in Switzerland, but the how it is used in daily life is a little bit different. Also when there only is a Zebra crossing without traffic light you often see big yellow bowls, which blink. I made the experience that the cars not very often stop, just because you are waiting at the crossing. However this is my opinion and a few cars stopped for me. 😉
That’s is for today. I am again waiting at the Airport (in Dublin), but it seems like I can fly home quite soon. The story about my cancelled flight from Heathrow to Dublin will be uploaded soon!!
Have a nice day