1. Have a corn dog.
Because nothing says America like deep-fried questionable meat on a stick.
2. Eat in a diner.
Preferably one that’s been around since the 1950s or one that’s also an iconic landmark, like this diner in Blairstown, New Jersey, which can be seen in the movies Friday The 13th and Plasterhead.
4. Hail a cab.
If you’re lucky, maybe you’ll even come across a driver who will provide you with some valuable advice.
5. Spend the night in a motel.
The kind that’s a bit gross where you can get murdered in the shower just to spice up your vacation.
6. Rent a car and take a scenic road trip.
Driving in the United States is an experience in and of itself. Just maybe don’t drive through Kansas…
8. Fill up your car with gas.
Okay, okay, this is just because, in France, they have to hold the nozzle the whole time the gas is pumping. In the United States, this is not the case. Ah, sweet, beautiful, American freedom!
9. Get some good old American fast food.
But how about something that’s not McDonald’s? Try Taco Bell, White Castle, Papa John’s, or Wendy’s.
10. Eat pancakes. Lots of pancakes.
With butter, maple syrup, whipped cream, chocolate syrup…
11. Enjoy as many donuts as possible.
Have one of each! You don’t visit the United States to go on a diet.
12. Attend a sporting event.
It doesn’t matter what the sport is or even whether or not you actually like it. It’s all about the supercharged atmosphere.
13. Visit the filming locations of your favorite movies and TV series.
The whole country is like a gigantic open-air studio! There are also specialized websites like this one and organizations like On Location Tours that offer guided, thematic, or more general tours in several cities throughout the states.
14. Go to a mall.
American shopping malls make malls in France look puny. There are malls in just about every city, but the Mall of America in Bloomington, Minnesota, with its over 500 stores, truly takes the cake.
15. Play a round of basketball in a park.
You will surely find someone who will be delighted to beat you good!
16. Visit a pharmacy.
In the United States, pharmacies are a beast of their own. You can find almost anything there. Medicines of all kinds, of course, but also candy, magazines, clothing, alcohol, etc.
17. Attend a gospel concert.
There are many places to do so in the United States. You can, of course, go to a church, but in New York, for example, there is also a multitude of other options as shown in this handy guide.
18. Listen to the radio.
In France, unless you love to listen to the same song ten times in one day, the radio is not the best way to get your daily dose of music. In the United States, however, it’s quite the opposite. There are radio stations for almost every variety of music. Here are the most popular stations.
19. Eat a hamburger that may or may not be larger than your head.
Pro tip: If you are in a place where there is a Shake Shack, Sonic, or In-N-Out… go wild.
20. And finally, meet lots of people and be astonished by their kindness.
People will smile at you on the subway. People will offer help if you look lost or confused. And you might even be called “honey,” “sugar,” or some variation of these terms of endearment by a complete stranger.
This post was translated from French.
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