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    18 American Things That Shocked Non-Americans Visiting The Country For The First Time

    Land of the free, home of the incredibly large bathroom-stall door gaps.

    As an American who grew up in a massive tourist town*, I often wonder what it must be like for someone visiting this country for the first time.

    And this week when redditor itsrainingboi asked, "Non-Americans who have visited the USA, what surprised you?" it really highlighted how odd visitors find our everyday "normal."

    So here are just a few of the things that delighted, shocked, and/or otherwise confused our lovely visitors upon their first trip to the US:

    1. "Portion sizes. I thought it was just a joke in movies. Your smalls are bigger than our larges. Your large sodas are bigger than my head."


    2. "People still use cash."


    3. "I've been to New Orleans, and everyone was calling me 'honey,' 'sugar,' 'babe,' 'sunshine,' and 'love.' I found it very sweet, blushed every time, and couldn't get enough of it! On the other hand...the amount of ice you put in your drinks is ridiculous."


    4. "The number of people who thought my family and I were Australian...we're British."


    5. "There was a 24-hour pharmacy across the street from our apartment. Nothing shocking there, except that it ALSO sold booze and cigarettes. What the actual fuck, like..."


    6. "How cheap the food is! And I was in Chicago, so it was good food, too!"


    7. "Good: Very welcoming people. Americans will invite you into their home after knowing you for five minutes. Bad: Poverty and derelict infrastructure everywhere once you're off main streets. Neutral: Everything has to be gigantic. From buildings to cars, food portions to airports — everything except spoons. Spoons are ridiculously small for some reason?"


    8. "The toilet water being so high. Wiping was terrifying!"


    9. "That you guys don't include taxes in your prices? I went to a convenience store to get a drink and was very confused when the price labeled was different at checkout."


    10. "My parents went to Houston on a business trip a couple of years back, and — outside of the obvious things — they were really surprised not to have a water option for breakfast at their hotel...just sodas. I mean, fruit juices were also available for breakfast, but that’s standard. If you want to sweeten it a little? Sure. But sodas?! As in Coca-Cola, Pepsi, Fanta, and the likes? For breakfast?! Just...why?!"


    11. "That the suburban neighborhoods really did look like they had in all of my favorite childhood movies. I felt like a kid again riding my bicycle through Lakewood, Ohio. So cool."


    12. "The huge number of flags everywhere."


    13. "Tipping. I had zero clue about tipping/how to tip, and I got a lot of dirty looks during my first solo trip there. I felt like shit after finding out."


    14. "My family hosted a high school–age foreign exchange student from Japan, and he had difficulty dealing with how informal student-teacher interactions were. He really hated the lack of classroom discipline and felt teachers moved way too slowly in core subjects. He wrote us that, after he returned to Japan, he had to take supplemental courses to catch up to his classmates."


    15. "Your public toilets have INCREDIBLY large gaps in the doors."


    16. "How much greener Texas was, as opposed to what I'd imagined!"


    17. "How many places essentially had no concept of what a 'sidewalk' is."


    18. "People always mention how 'gigantic' everything is — but the alcoholic drinks there are tiny!"


    Now it's your turn! As a visitor, what about the US has surprised you? And heck — if you ARE American — what about visiting OTHER STATES in the US has surprised you? Share in the comments below!