Walking the dog this morning, I was thinking of all the stuff I have got used to since being here that was different in the UK!
Here's my list - I'm sure I'll think of more - of a few things that are different....
1. No post at weekends
2. No letterboxes in the doors of houses - you have to walk down the drive and get your post from a freestanding letter box
3. Newspapers being rolled, wrapped in clingwrap, and flung somewhere onto your drive or flower bed
4. Lots of junk mail to browse through, that sometimes is quite useful/interesting
5. The most common birds I see are magpies - I know they have sparrows here but they seem few and far between. In England, seeing a pair of magpies was about the max, here there're loads of them
6. Having to watch out for the magpies dive-bombing you in September
7. Calling felt tip pens "textas"
8. Everyone riding a bicycle has to wear a helmet (one of the more sensible laws I think)
9. Having to park on the correct side of the road
10. Driving with one eye on my speedometer all the time (60 on most main roads, 50 as soon as you turn off onto a side road) and feeling like it's party time when I hit a stretch of road with a 70 or 80 limit!
11. Nice wide roads
12. Saturday being filled with kids sport or musical activities (this may be the same in the UK but my kids were younger when we were there)
13. Bedding being called Manchester, sweets being called Lollies, and having to refer to Football as Soccer when I'm talking to an aussie
14. Sitting up till the early hours watching the Tour De France on free-to-air TV, likewise the Ashes when it's being played in England
15. Being able to go see a National Team play occasionally somewhere local (The Ashes mainly, but also seen The Matildas)
16. Being able to go an see world class bands/acts just a half hour from home (funnily enough, no-one ever came on tour to Chelmsford!)
17. Hearing the phrase Budgie Smugglers (still makes me snigger), and swear words used on TV and radio far more (such as "W*nker" used frequently by otherwise quite refined people!!)
18. Getting asked several times a day how I am? People don't just say "Hi" it's "Hi (or G'Day - yes, aussies do actually say that!), how are ya?" and replying "Good, how are you?" then feeling rude if I don't stop walking to listen to their answer!
19. Listening to decent radio on the computer (coz nothing beats the BBC)
20. Having only about two choices when I want to buy a paper
21. Having to order "white tea" in cafes rather than just "tea"
22. Having to think twice before making reference to kids programmes that everyone in the UK would have heard of, and no-one here has (like Blue Peter for instance, and Magpie, and How?)
23. Hardly having heard (myself - I may be unusual here!) of many well known people here that everyone has heard of (like John Farnham, and Bert Newton)
24. Having to ask complete strangers for advice about something that in the Uk I'd have quickly got on the phone to my Dad to ask (like, how do I prune a rosebush? - thanks Stevo!!)
25. "Pants" are trousers - so when a local radio station has a "Pants Off Friday" it's not quite as risque as my mind wants to think
26. Doing more cooking from scratch as "ready meals" are pretty rare and pretty awful here
27. Cooking with pumpkin on a regular basis rather than just at Halloween
28. Not going "upstairs" to bed
29. Wearing sunglasses (and calling them "sunnies") whenever the sun is out - I don't think I even owned a pair in the Uk but it's just so damned bright here
30. Shortening all those difficult long words "footie, cozzie, firies, ambos..."
31. Being able to dry washing on the line when it's sunny in half an hour, but not having radiators to dry it on inside when it's wet.
32. Cold tiled floors in the bathroom (although come to think of it, and as I've been told by many aussies, it's pretty unhygienic to have carpet in a bathroom/toilet like we had in the Uk!)
All stuff I now just take for granted, but now realise is different to what I grew up with all those years!!
Any more, anyone?