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Roadtrip USA 2011 - The Experience(s)

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posted on Nov, 22 2011 @ 12:28 PM
So...not to contaminate the Roadtrip USA 2011 - The Movie(s) thread, I will begin a new one here in which I will share my thoughts and wonderings on what I saw, heard and felt over in the majestic US of A.

The first things that comes to mind are food and beverage related experiences.

1) This might sound a bit trivial, but what has happened to Gatorade's green apple flavour???
We used to have that over here for a limited time through a specialized US novelty shop called Gray's but that place closed down in -09. I was really looking forward to getting some while I was over but through countless convenience stores, truck stops and food marts of all sizes, throughout 9 states I didn't see one lousy container!
Anyone know why it went out of production?

2) The beer man...

I knew it was going to be bad but it was much worse that I had feared it to be. Especially Coor's was more or less undrinkable. Even the "imported" american beers we get over here vastly outmatches the domestic beer in the US. I don't know what the real problem was but it was just plain hard to down one. I tried most of the major brands and I guess all of them sucked. Yet, I need to mention that the local micro breweries had some pretty nice treats. This one place in Portland had a couple of real impressive house brands (the brewery itself was located inside the bar, in the basement, and could be seen through a glass wall).

3) The coffee...

Why, oh why do you keep calling that junk coffee? There should be some other name for it cause it sure isn't the same beverage I grew up drinking. What is over there is some sort of mildly coffee-flavoured tea. '
Sad to say, the only propper cuppa I got was at Starbuck's. Their "French Roast" was like what a mediocre coffee over here tastes like.

4) Corn Syrup.

Insulin can't break it down and make it into energy so it turns into fat- directly. 4 weeks ingesting that stuff made me gain weight. A LOT of weight. More or less impossible to avoid eating since it was in everything there was to eat and drink. I was told that "there is sugar in everything over there". I wish it was. Sugar tastes a whole lot better and your body can actually (at least in theory) get rid of it relatively fast.
I was chocked when looking into the cold drinks fridge at one truck stop, seeing a "limited edition" Pepsi "now with real sugar". Geez. I hope all of you get the chance to taste a cola of any produce with real sugar in it. HFCS can never "beat the feeling".

Much more to come and I'll try to limit the ranting. There was in fact some real wonderful stuff too, believe it or not
If you need proof of that, check the movies in the provided link

posted on Nov, 22 2011 @ 12:52 PM
I'm pretty sure all the real sugar sodas aren't limited edition. They have been in super markets for years now and all the major brands have a real sugar edition since the backlash over Corn Syrup became somewhat popular.

Coffee never drink it, Beer never drink it, Gatorade never even tried it, who wants to drink flavored water?

But a road trip in the USA and the most important thing you find to complain about is the drinks available?

edit on 11/22/2011 by mnmcandiez because: (no reason given)

edit on 11/22/2011 by mnmcandiez because: (no reason given)

posted on Nov, 22 2011 @ 01:51 PM
I have never even heard of Green Apple Gatorade. I prefer orange anyway, possibly my favorite beverage ever. I know that sometimes, manufacturers make special products for different markets, so that may explain why you have had it and I have never heard of it. American domestic beer sucks. It's just bad. I really can't stand to drink it. Craft brews are the way to go in my opinion. Micro brews can be ok too, but many of them are just ok. My favorite would definitely be Sierra Nevada from California. They are one of the oldest and largest. Micro brews tend to be pretty creative, but because of their tiny scales of production, they can have a hard time getting certain ingredients. Craft breweries are larger and tend to be able to get whatever they want because their purchasing power is so much greater. The large scale domestics just use what is cheap. I agree too, that most coffee here isn't very good. Most coffee made by the mega brands contain larger percentages of cheaper and more potent Robusto beans rather than the more expensive Arabica beans. Americans also tend to drink a lot of coffee, which may explain why it tastes weak. I think if you tried to drink Starbuck's drip brewed coffee all day, you would get sick. You would also be shaking a lot! There are tons of local cafes here that roast their own beans too, many of them are pretty good. Like the beer, I guess its just a matter of taste. I love Starbucks, but I know lots of people who hate it. It may depend where you live, but I rarely ever see soda with real sugar in it and usually then, its only in the 20oz bottles. I've tried it before and really don't notice a substantial difference in taste. I checked out your other thread, where was your cell phone when it got stolen? I hope you didn't put it in your checked bag. I would never ever consider putting my phone, camera, laptop, etc. in my checked bag. You're just asking for trouble. I'm glad your trip was overall enjoyable. There is a lot to see here. America may not have 500 year old family homes and castles like Europe, but there is still plenty to take in. It's a huge country with lots of variety.

posted on Nov, 22 2011 @ 04:59 PM
reply to post by mnmcandiez

Yeah, it is kinda stupid, I know! I have been intending to post this thread for some time now but I never got the creative influence to make it happen, so I went for the spontaneous approach instead; just writing what ever comes to mind first. I guess I am kind of a food-and-drink personality

reply to post by thefurryone

I guess you could be right about the Gatorade flavour, but when it comes to soda with real (cane) sugar I guess you still have to look around a bit for it; it isn't really a standard sweetener, is it? HFCS is coming over to Europe more and more as well...
About the coffee, my country ranks 6 on most coffee consumed per capita while the US enters at 25(!).
The phone I lost on the plane. I think it fell between the cushions on the seat and got jammed down real deep during the flight. I did however tell the woman at the airport help desk that she should tell the maintenance crew that currently was inside the cabin to look specifically there. They claimed they couldn't find anything on, in, under or anywhere around my seat. Either a filthy lie or someone in the crew had already taken it. I seriously doubt that any other passenger would have seen it and taken it. I mean, after 15 hours or so you just wanna get out from the plane, not scurry around for something to steal.
You are right about the beauty of the US countryside. It blew our minds over and over. You got plenty of historical landmarks but they do not belong to the post-Columbian culture

posted on Nov, 22 2011 @ 05:29 PM
People and relations:

5) The friendliness; unprecedented.
I've been to many countries around the world and met a lot of different cultures but none has been so sincerely open and friendly as the one in the USA. In Thailand, for example, people are extremely polite and nice but it feels more like they are obliged to be so (not that they complain openly about it though) but in the States it is more like it really comes from your heart. It is like the natural onset is that a stranger is the nicest, friendliest and most decent person you've ever met- until proven the opposite. Of course I know that people remain people, all unique and diverse, but I have never encountered such a warm general approach towards myself in position of being a perfect stranger. It seemed that the more isolated the town you're in, the more friendly the population. This isn't a complicated equation, but it has never been as obvious as in rural USA. City folks where more of the stressed out, closed-off category but nowhere as bad as it is where I live. I think that throughout our trip we met maybe 3 real idiots which equals half a day around my neck of the woods. I still can't wrap my head around the fact that a shop keeper would actually recommend the store across the street for a better deal than what they provided!
We were never afraid to ask anyone for anything (though we remained typically discrete in a Scandinavian way) and what ever we asked anyone we got full attention. Being a sucker for good service in all shapes and forms, I was in heaven!

6) Why won't people see their own country?
As we were browsing the Buffalo Bill Centre in Cody, WY we overheard the security officer talking to two senior visitors. He asked them where they've been on their trip and they mentioned Monument Valley (where we had just come from two days ago or something like that). The security guy expressed his deepest wish to go there himself one day and that he had been wanting to go there for many, many years.
Monument Valley, AZ is like 780 miles away. Two days of driving. The guy was a grown man with a job. If he didn't own a car (which would be highly unlikely that he didn't), I bet he could go with a friend or even take the bus.
What I am trying to say here is that we heard this kind of thing the whole time! Whenever we spoke to locals and told them about our trip there was "oh, that is like my dream to go on such a road trip" or "you guys are the luckiest people alive" kind of talk.
Damn it, get in the car and GO for heavens sake! How hard could it be? We had to fly across the ocean to get there; you could just drive, any day, any time.
Why is it like this? Why won't you go places when there is just so much to see and with a country that is freaking made to be experienced from the road? Gas is like a third of the prices we have over here.
Big mystery.

7) The most second-most disturbing thing was the dis-concern and/or unawareness for environmental issues, namely the depletion of the earth's resources.
You guys have to quit wasting planet, PLEASE!
The mega-markets was a horror to witness. Yeah, we are getting them over here too so maybe I should keep my mouth shut, but the ones in the US are just too freaking much and there isn't even a customer base to justify these literal hangars of, mostly, fresh produce that will probably just go to waste. The endless rows of freezers. Man, do you have any idea how much power that consumes?
Seems like, however, that it is not the consumption that's the issue, it is rather the production that is running amok. No big surprise there though, it is bound to happen when it comes to capitalism. Just a freaking eye-sore to behold.
Typical example; at Universal studios, four escalators going between the upper park and the lower park. One escalator is switched off. At the foot of it stands a sign: "This escalator is temporarily out of service. Universal studios does what they can to preserve energy." Together with that an illustration of a blooming tree.
Give. Me. A. Break.

I am sorry to tell you this but you guys are in for the roughest ride there is when resources get more and more scarce. Having been to Russia many times I've seen that they also consume massive amounts of natural resources and stuff but at least they know the true meaning "hard times". They can cut down on everything if they have to and survive just fine by improvising, conserving and sweating it out. I experienced none such preparedness in the USA. It was like the entire country had the blinders on and kept thinking it was still 1955.
Well, it ain't. You have to wake up now, even though it actually is way too late. You don't have to adapt because you don't have the time, but you have to be prepared to face a society lacking everything and without any long-term solutions to it.
Real depressing.
edit on 22-11-2011 by Raud because: html error

posted on Nov, 22 2011 @ 05:37 PM
8) The most disturbing thing we experienced was the form of apartheid that was exercised towards the native population, especially the Navajo (since they are the largest tribe).
I don't know how much I should write on this topic since I am afraid I would never stop, but they way they are treated still hundreds of years later is just plain despicable. We heard, and saw, such extreme injustice, I could never have imagined.
I knew it was bad but this was just above and beyond that, this was pure racism. Highly ironic when thinking of the traditional values of the USA. Afro-Americans did get their rights and have come pretty far from how bad it was up until late 60's. The natives have come nowhere. It looks more like they are getting it worse.
Strange, concerning how much of a national symbol the native American is.
Why does it have to be this way?

Yeah, I know we Scandinavians do treat our own natives like crap too but don't tell me it is anywhere near they way it is like in the States.

posted on Nov, 22 2011 @ 05:43 PM
Hmmm, I feel like I should write something nice to take the edge of all the rantings.
I guess the videos show how much we loved that place, from the bottom of our hearts so this thread has become sort of a flip-side to all that.... It was honestly not my intention.

Well, I'll tell you that I just can't wait to go back! Next time will be southern states (though I want to go the exact same route again as last time or do the east part).

The United States of America is just awesome! It has one of the world's worst governments (in disguise) but, man, is the land of the utmost excellent beauty and the people the most warm and open hearted I have ever had the great honour to meet and socialize with!

You guys ROCK!
I wish you all a bright future that you deserve.

posted on Nov, 23 2011 @ 05:08 PM
9) What is up with the "Zzyzx Road" on I-15?

Over all you've got some crazy names on places. I'll see if I can get back to you on this one after browsing through the photos we took on the road.

posted on Jan, 11 2012 @ 03:07 AM
reply to post by Raud

great experience


posted on Jan, 15 2012 @ 09:19 PM
Hey! I really enjoyed your comments! I'm glad you had a great trip to the US!

It's really interesting to me to hear what other people's impressions of our country are. I agree with you on almost every point.

I'm a tour director---and so I travel a lot to different spots around the world. I agree America is very beautiful, but to me, Europe is really quite special. The architecture, the beautiful shops, the old world charm. I just got home from Italy and I can't believe the whole world hasn't moved to Florence.

A lot of Americans don't travel. It's an interesting phenomenon. I live within 3 1/2 miles from New York City and I can't tell you how many people I know who have never been there. Can you imagine that? Less than 4 hours from one of the greatest cities in the world and you can't find it in yourself to just drive there---even for a day? An afternoon?

But it's very common. Americans can be very provincial... it's just their way. 37% of Americans own a passport, but you think it would be higher given our standard of living.

I look forward to hearing more of your observations.

PS---My Dad was a world traveler---and he always said that Americans and Australians are a lot alike. Very friendly population...outgoing and optimistic...

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