11 Unexpected Things That are Different About Everyday Life In Spain

11 Unexpected Things That are Different About Everyday Life In Spain

Light switches, printer paper, and bananas. Who knew?

I have learned a lot in my first month in Spain. From the language and history to the details of daily life in a new country, there are so many things to soak up. Here are 11 everyday things that I have noticed are just a bit different than in the US.

1. The light switches switch the other way.

You don't really think about all of the tiny habits you have until they stop working for you. I was really confused why I kept "missing" when I tried to turn off the lights until I realized what was going on.

2. The standard size for printer paper is longer.

Upside: My document that had just a couple of lines continuing onto the next page on my computer fit onto one page when I went to print it. And I didn't even have to mess with the margins! Downside: The 8-page paper I have due in a few weeks really needs to be about 9 "pages" in my head.

3. People actually use knives at every meal.

Maybe I just missed the memo, but I usually just use the side of my fork.

4. "C" is for caliente, not cold.

Common sense, but a good one to remember.

5. Pretty much everything is shifted two-three hours later.

Things open at about 9:30, lunch is at 2 or 3, and dinner is at 9 or 10. The hottest part of the day is around 6 pm, not 3 (still trying to figure that one out). Want to go out with friends? Anything before 12 is ridiculously early, and going home before 3 is weird. One time I was walking through the middle of the city at 7:30 am, and no one was going to work; the only people I saw were stumbling home after the parties.

6. The main floor is 0, not 1.

And the basement is -1. Makes sense.

7. A lot of the doors have doorknobs in the middle of the door.

Like in the Shire! (They're still rectangular, though.)

8. Most tall shoes have very wide heels.

Partly the current fashion trend, partly not wanting to die when walking on the cobblestone streets.

9. It is weirdly difficult to find a notebook with lines.

Most of the ones I found were graph paper or blank inside. Also, the pages have colored borders to separate the different sections, and the planners have tear-off corners so that you can easily flip to the current week. Overall, a win.

10. The playing cards go up to 12 and have actual pictures, not the symbols.

Instead of the clubs, spades, diamonds, and hearts, there are clubs (like an actual baseball-bat-like object), swords, coins, and goblets.

11. The bananas open differently.

Instead of snapping the top, you have to twist it. Also, the peels are thicker, so a banana with some significant brown spots is probably still perfect on the inside.

Cover Image Credit: http://www.foodswinesfromspain.com/spanishfoodwine/wcm/idc/groups/public/documents/imagen/otyx/mtgy/~edisp/1961182109.jpg

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11 Must-Go To Day Trips In North Carolina

For the wanderers and curious...

It's finally summer, classes are out! There are so many things to do in this beautiful state. There are many small towns to visit. These towns are perfect day trips. From the mountains to the beach and everything in between, there is something for everyone! Pack your car up and get ready for a summer of adventure.

1. NoDa

This is a small hipster district right outside of Uptown Charlotte. Music and art paint this town and it has a very creative energy flow. Amelie's Bakery, a 24/7 french bakery, is located in this district. There is always something fun and new to try in this cute, artistic town!

2. Asheville

This town is known for the beautiful scenery and historic importance. The Biltmore Estate is located here, and it is open for tours every day of the year. It is the biggest estate in America. The downtown area is very artistic, and the mountains make for a gorgeous hike. This is definitely an adventure you don't want to miss.

3. Boone

This small town has a lot of outdoor activities. It is perfect for hiking and whitewater rafting. If you love nature, this is a must see. It is a college town where Appalachian State University is located. The downtown area is very old school and for modern hipsters.

4. Crowders Mountain

This is located in Gaston County. Once you reach the Pinnacle, the peak of the trail, with clear skies you can see for miles. It is a quick four-mile hike for the short one, the view is amazing.

5. Wilmington

This city is known for the beachfront. It makes a perfect day to hit the waves. There are many beach fronts to visit, such as Carolina Beach. Cape Fear Ocean runs through this city. White sand, waves and the boardwalk. If you are a fan of One Tree Hill, it was filmed here.The small restaurants and characteristics give this town a vibrant energy.

6. Serendipity House

This house is from the movie Nights In Rodanthe located on a beach in Avon, North Carolina. It has been remodeled, but the amazing characteristics of this make it a sight to see.

7. Linville Falls

This is located in Linville, North Carolina. Attractions close by are also the Blue Ridge Mountain. To get to the main fall, it is about a mile hike.

8. Outer Banks

Small beaches on the outer banks of North Carolina have wild horses. Corolla Wild Ponies run free, and you can even take a ride on them in the water.

9. Sliding Rock

Located in Brevard, this rock is actually naturally made from a small waterfall. You can actually go sliding down it. It is in Pisgah National Forest also near Asheville.

10. Devil's Tramping Ground

This is located near Bennett. It is a 40-foot circle that cannot grow life. If you leave something or sleep in the circle, the rumor is it will be outside of the circle the next day.

11. Land of Oz Theme park

Located in Beech Mountain, this theme park that was once full of life is now closed and for the most part abandoned. It comes alive for one night a year for an event. This is definitely a place to take a night adventure to...

Cover Image Credit: Tumblr

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Day Four In Italy: Florence

This is the day we learned the history of everything


Waking up bright and early we first took the tour bus to the country side of Florence where we visited a medieval town full of shops that lined a beautiful countryside.

CountrysideBrooke Burney

We spent about three hours here just looking around, buying things, and taking pictures. Once the three hours were up, we went to a winery where they explained how they made wine with the grapes in their vineyard.

In the vineyardBrooke Burney

After the tour, they fed us lunch with some of their wine. Then, after we ate, we passed through their wine shop and took the bus back to the Piazza della Signoria. On the way back, our tour guide was telling us about Michelangelo and his time creating the Statue of David. We had to stand in a line for about thirty minutes but when our time came, we were thrilled. We entered and saw artwork from many different artists. However, Michelangelo had a hallway of his own that was mostly filled with unfinished sculptures of statues with David being at the very end.

Statue of DavidBrooke Burney

After the tour of the art museum, our tour guide took us to the square where the churches were and gave us a history lesson on them. He gave us a background on the pictures that were painted on the doors and what they represent.

Brooke Burney

After this tour, we went back to our hotel where we were able to go eat dinner. My friends and I went back to the small square we first went to and ate in a small pizza joint.

Italian pizzaBrooke Burney

If you ever go to Europe, keep in mind that they have a hard time splitting orders. As we were sitting at this table, we asked for separate checks but they made us pay separately on a single check, which was kind of funny watching three American girls pick through their euros.

After dinner, we went back to our hotel to pack for the next day. To the train station, then Pompeii!

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