10 Observations from My First Week in Minnesota

September 12, 2010

  1. Minnesotans still proudly rock the ‘socks and sandals’ look (picture above of our friend Don sporting his combo at the cabin)
  2. Everyone has a fancy phone and no one knows how to use them
  3. There is a SERIOUS problem with obesity in the states
  4. Food experiences fail to live up to the idealized memory I had in my head
  5. Overbooking your schedule = Unnecessary stress
  6. Things are not as fun without your husband to enjoy them with
  7. The excessive amount of road construction here mitigates the initial pleasure of driving again
  8. Never assume that Minnesota weather will follow normal patterns (2/3 of what I packed is unwearable due to temps)
  9. The financial crisis is impacting people in very real ways – 60+ year old women working at Banana Republic, Sale signs EVERYWHERE, more tragedies in the last 2 months than I’ve heard of in years
  10. ‘Minnesotan Nice’ is still alive and well – even a recession can’t destroy that   :)

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  1. Jed says:

    My dad is proud to rock the “socks and sandals” every day…I hear you on that one.

  2. Lisa Overman says:

    Sarah – I’m totally with you on the food thing. I have to say that most of the food in the U.S. was pretty blah and in fact at a couple really fancy places – it was awful. Not sure if that means the food in Congo is really that much better or I’ve just gotten used to it here. So glad you are having a great time at home though!

  3. Andrea says:

    Well said, Sarah. Thanks for the warning/preview in preparation for our trip back to MN!

  4. Chris Coleman says:

    Re: #4 -isn’t that weird how you remember something tasting soooo luscious and then when you actually taste it again it just doesn’t live up to that memory – think it may have something to do with the actual moment of the memory – who you were with, what you were doing that made the tasting so much better. But nonetheless – just weird!

  5. Shannon says:

    It’s Friday, and that means that the Weekly State Department Blog Roundup is up – and you’re on it! 

    Here is the link:


    If I quoted your text or used your photo(s) and you would rather I had not, please let me know. Please also be sure to check the link(s) that I put up to you, in order to verify that they work properly. If you would rather that I had not referenced you please also contact me. Thanks! 

  6. Sara Roy says:

    Hm…the food thing scares me. I want good food!

  7. sarahlynn60 says:

    I’ve definitely had ones that met expectations, I was just surprised by the ones that let me down!

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