Do You Have Any Change?

This conversation happened at check out in the store last night.

My Husband: (Taking the money out of his wallet to pay the cashier) Do you have any change?

Me: Yeah. I think I have a quarter, but I don’t have it with me.

The Cashier: (Laughing)

Fashion Party

Today I overheard a converstation that went something like this.

Woman 1: I’ve nearly finished planning Alexandra’s 7th birthday party.

Woman 2: What have you decided to do?

Woman 1: We’re going to have a fashion party. The girls will try on designer clothes and have their hair and make-up done. The make-up will be age appropriate of course.

Woman 2: Well of course.

I’ll let the designer clothes thing slide, but I want to know what age appropriate make-up for a 7 year old looks like. Maybe it’s face paint, but somehow I doubt it.

Has Your Accent Changed, too?


I was having a conversation with my husband yesterday about money that went something like this.

My husband: All I have is ten dollars. (My husband still says dollars even though we’ve been in the UK for two years now.)

Me: Here I have a twenty.

My husband: What did you say?

Me: I have a twenty.

My husband: What do you have?

Me: A twenty.

My husband: You’re accent is changing. (For some reason this delights him.)

According to him, I’ve started pronouncing the t’s in the middle of words like the English. I have no idea what he’s talking about. I don’t notice any difference at all.

Here’s an interesting side note. I got my Indefinite Leave to Remain Visa in the mail the other day. That means I can stay. This is no longer a 2 year experiment in living abroad. The funny thing is when read up on this visa before applying I didn’t read anything about the receipt of it changing the way you pronounce your t’s. Will the way I spell things change soon too?

(If my stepson ever starts reading this post and sees that I’ve put a picture of the Union Jack up, he’ll go on and on about how he can’t believe I did that. He’s painfully proud to be American.)

We’ve Been Getting Some Complaints


I hate door to door sales people. That’s not really true. I don’t really hate the people, I just hate the door to door sales that they’re doing. Many of them are probably perfectly nice to be around when they’re not trying to sell you something. I’m sure they must hate their jobs too. I mean I would hate it if I had to do that.

Anyway, there was a knock on the door this morning and since I was doing my hair I told my husband to answer it. It was a door to door salesman. Their spiels are so good sometimes that I wish I could record them. This one was about changing our telephone and broadband provider.

Salesman: Hello. Are you Mr. Martinez?

My husband: No you must have the wrong address.

Salesman: That must be the previous tenant’s name.

My husband: I don’t know.

Salesman: It doesn’t matter. We’re interviewing people who use OP company about their telephone and internet service.

My husband: I’m not with OP company.

Salesman: …and people with XYZ company too. I’m from ABC company and we’ve been getting a lot of complaints from people in your area about XYZ company’s rising prices.

(I would like to point out how this makes no sense. Why would customers from XYZ be calling ABC to complain about XYZ’s prices?)

My husband: I’m happy with XYZ company.

Salesman: I wouldn’t want you to change a service you’re happy with. You can have the exact same service with us for cheaper.

(Wouldn’t that be changing your service?)

My husband: I’ll compare the rates online and see what I think.

Salesman: This is a special offer. You won’t find anything online this  low.

My husband: I’m not interested then.

Salesman: We’ve come all the way from Manchester to help you save money.

(Wow! He’s really committed to helping us save money. After all he came all the way from Manchester.)

My husband: Sorry I’m not interested.

My husband just told me that he thinks he should put up a “No Solicitors” sign on our door. Since they call lawyers solicitors here I don’t think that would do us much good. I’m not too keen on lawyers either–unless they’re my sister, but we don’t tend to have a problem them knocking on our door and trying to get us to sue somebody.

Photo by L*u*z*a*

Open Sesame

My problem opening doors continues. The other day we went to the shops down the street to buy electricity (we have a prepay electric meter). When we got to the shop door I immediately started trying to pull it open. When it didn’t open I pulled again harder. My husband of course said nothing he just stood behind me watching until the person working in the shop opened the door for me.

My husband finally decided to try to tackle my door problem on the way home.

My husband: Just so you know all doors open in here.

Me: No they don’t.

My husband: Maybe not all door, but definitely all shop doors.

I don’t know if that’s true, but I’ve tried to commit this possible fact to memory so I don’t make a complete fool of myself again. Okay, I probably will make a fool of myself again but it won’t be because of a door.

Morris Dancing

“Have you heard of Morris dancing?” my husband asked.

Curious I looked it up. Morris dancing a a type of English folk dancing in which the dancers wield sticks, swords or handkerchiefs. This description intrigued me even more so I watched a video of it on You Tube.

“See. This is your heritage,” I said to my husband.

“Yeah, no wonder I have such bad time,” he laughed.


I must be hard of hearing. That’s the only excuse for the difficulty I have understanding what people are saying to me in a noisy room. Having a conversation in the midst of the buzz of many other conversations going on all around you is hard of a lot of people, but I think it’s harder for me. It’s probably even more difficult for the person I’m trying to have the conversation with, because it usually goes something …

Other person: Isn’t the weather lovely today?

Me: Pardon me?

Other person: I said, isn’t the weather lovely today?

Me: I’m sorry. I can’t hear you. What did you say?

Other person: The weather, isn’t it nice today?

Me: (I have no idea what was just said to me, but I know it ended with day and was a question. If I ask her to repeat it again she’ll be annoyed,  so  I’ll just have to guess.) I’m doing well. How have you been?

Maybe the problem isn’t really my hearing. Maybe I’m just a really bad guesser.

I’ve thought about learning to read lips. I’m good at reading. I especially like reading novels and take-out menus. Learning to read lips should be no problem.