Saturday, August 24, 2013

Expat to Expat Q+A: Life on the Daily

Hey all, hope your weekend is off to a good start! Once again, I'm glad to hop on this Expat to Expat link-up train with Belinda and Bailie. This month's theme is about daily life in your country abroad...If you're just tuning in, I'm currently living in Lima, Peru. Thanks for stopping by! 
1. What is your favorite food store in your city and why?  
We've been getting the large majority of our food from the local market, called Surquillo.  I love it because I can bargain a little bit and everything is very fresh and not as imported from other places. Although I just went to the supermarket today and found out prices are slightly cheaper -  really!?! So maybe I'll be shopping there for somethings too...And I just found out about a weekly farmers market for special products which I may splurge for, like fresh milk, yogurt, honey. I'm excited to check it out tomorrow!
2. For your answer to number 1 is it ok to buy the store brand items or do you pay extra for a name brand?
I usually just opt for the cheapest. Except for juice which is usually worth a few more cents for the better one. In general there are way less brand options, making it a lot easier (and faster) to choose.
3. What do you think is the best way to get about your city? i.e. bus, bike, car, etc.
I definitely would NOT want to have, much less drive, a car here. Actually there's a TV show called "Don't Drive Here" and the city featured on the latest episode was -you guessed it- Lima! It basically shows all the crazy drivers and modes of transportation used. I take the buses (called combis) everyday, which are great because they're quick and cheap. I also wish I had a bike because there are some great streets you can ride on. AND every Sunday a street across the whole city is blocked off for cyclists. Cool!

A few of my combi tickets

4. Which store do you turn to for basics like toilet paper or cleaning supplies?
To buy in bulk I will buy at the supermarket, called Plaza Vea. It's kind of like Target because it has everything. 
5. Where do you think is the best place in your city to get a cup of coffee (or beverage you prefer) and catch up with friends? 
Good question! I'm still discovering a lot of things in the city so I'm not sure. But I really like that there are a lot of parks everywhere. Today we went to one called Mars Field - it was full of children flying kites, playing soccer, statues, a train, and doggies. It's a nice place to chat or read a book.

Extra questions from Emma, at Adventures of a London Kiwi:
1. What was your “eureka, I’m practically a native” moment? 
When the locals started asking me things. Sometimes I will get asked about a bus stop or where something is. That's the best. I hardly fit a ''typical" appearance of a local, but it feels good that I fit in and know my way around. I was really good at this in Cusco, but Lima is huge and quite new to me (for now). 
2. Does your real accent get in the way? 
I speak Spanish pretty well and get compliments on it. People are sometimes shocked that I'm from North America because my accent doesn't sound like it. Then, there's the center where I teach, the director and books use British English. In this situation, I am learning some British expressions and also teaching the cultural differences between the American and British English. 
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