Because there are so many Americans here in St. Andrews there are many similarities to the USA. An American told me the other day she had lived in Aberdeen before coming to St. Andrews and felt Aberdeen was a more Scottish experience and this town was a more international experience. There are people from all over coming here to study. Kent had a meeting the other day with all the first year PhD students. He said that chemistry is really big here and that the chemistry department had many more students than the other fields. He met 2 other older students in theology – one from France and one from Finland.
Anyway, some of the differences…… they are very “green” or eco-friendly. We have 4 trash bins to put out on a rotating schedule. I don’t mind recycling, but everything?! Paper, plastic, glass, cardboard, food scraps….. We have a mini trash can on the kitchen counter so we can put our left over food in it. We have to keep reminding ourselves. They also have the car battery chargers in the parking lots. Here is a picture which includes a YES flag on it.
Their expressions… you’ve probably already heard these, but when they talk with their accent it sounds so good. Some of them are brilliant, cheeky, ring me (call me), pop over, splendid, cheers, marvelous, there now, wee bit, and more.
Their accent- most of the people I can understand but some of the accents are super strong. Yesterday two cable installers came and I could not understand them. I had to ask them to repeat themselves and really concentrate. They knew I was having a hard time and said something about it. I told them they probably had a hard time understanding me which they said no because of all the American tv they watch.
Some of the food- haggis, neeps and tatties, yorkshire pudding, etc.
The church- The Dinnie’s (our friends who grew up in NJ and MA) told us that being a Christian in the northeast was different than being one in the south. There are many people who attend church and claim to be a Christian in the south, but in the northeast if you call yourself a Christian you really are. That is my first impression of Scotland. We went to a really neat small church on Sunday. It was simple and non contemporary – we sang psalms to different tunes. The teaching was expository about the Canaanite woman that came to ask Jesus to heal her daughter from being demon possessed. He called her a woman of great faith which was rare for anyone to be called that especially a woman. He spoke about great faith and used her story as an example of having it. See, it was a few days ago and I still remember the points. After church the pastor and his wife invited all the new people to their house for lunch which we went to and met many more people (mostly students). We went to a home group Wednesday and it was a neat group of all ages and all seemed to be mature Christians with a deep knowledge of scripture. We’re going to go to the baptist church tomorrow because we’ve been told they have a youth group and some of the kids go to the school we’re waiting to hear from.
Oh, we got the car. Another difference is it is hard to find an automatic car here. Most people drive manuals.
Some of the names are different. We’ve met Hamish (Hay-mish) which is James, Morag, and Isla (I-la). They do use more traditional older names such as Louise, Archie, Harry.
Went on a “fieldtrip” today and took lots of pictures. I’ll get those out soon. Have a great Sunday!