A list of the many different things you learn from being from the U.S. and living overseas, completely surrounded by people from all over the world.
1.You learn to say “I like your trousers” instead of “I like your pants”
2.You learn to decode many different accents, including different forms of British, Irish, Thai, Korean, etc.
3.You learn that, in fact, America isn’t the only country on the planet.
4.You learn that, “America” isn’t actually the name of your country, and people from the Americas get offended when you refer to the United States as “America,” as if there are no other existing countries in the Americas
5.You learn that it is very difficult not to start sounding like the different accents around you
6.You learn of new television shows you’d never heard of
7.You learn that other countries are looking at America in horror, going, “What are they thinking?”
8.You learn, in response to their horror and previous question, to say the only truth there is, “I have no idea.”
9.You learn that, for the rest of the world, the biggest threat to security in the world is the United States
10.You learn that, apparently, you have a very thick “southern” accent
11.You learn that prejudice comes in all shapes and sizes, and is not limited to any one skin color, creed, or country
12.You learn that other countries do things differently (like trimming bushes with a machete, for example)
13.You learn that no matter where you are, nobody is content with who God made them to be
14.You learn to differentiate between foreign written languages
15.You learn to smile because it makes everyone happy
16.You learn that not everything is about you
17.You learn what it feels like to be the outcast
18.You learn to see the world in a different way
19.You learn just how big the world really is, when you step outside of your geography class and travel halfway around the world and meet people who have also traveled from faraway places
20.You learn just how small the world really is, when you realize that these people, with their different languages, skin colors and cultures, actually aren’t that different from you