This is the story of our new life. Welcome to CaliCultureShock:


At the beginning of April 2014, I transplanted myself, my trusty sidekick (the Portugeezer) and my ever-faithful friend the doglet from our overpopulated, dingy corner of Northern Europe to sunny California.

We arrived in L.A on a windy Thursday afternoon with four massive suitcases stuffed with all the summer clothes we owned (not many), several bits of guitar equipment, various laptops, three kilos of Earl Grey tea, two bass guitars and a severely traumatised but otherwise intact dog.


Wait a minute, this doesn’t smell like Dutch-land. And what’s that burny thing in the sky? One of my hairy beast’s marks his territory in the dog park at LAX.

We stuffed everything into a big, shiny S.U.V (fit in with the locals) and then headed south. In Huntington Beach we ate the best tacos we’d ever eaten, like, ever (getting in with the local teen lingo), although we are now actually unsure whether they really were the best tacos we’d ever eaten or whether we were just so used to Dutch blandness that something so fresh and tasty sent our brains into a Mexican themed-frenzy. No matter; our jet-lagged selves enjoyed the pit-stop and the fresh sea air and the dog enjoyed hoovering up nacho crumbs and sniffing the local Chihuahuas. We continued on our way to San Diego and found out that we’d unwittingly landed ourselves an apartment in the hippest part of town (i.e. full of beards, bikes, MacBooks and microbreweries).

The first month has flown by. It’s been a long few weeks of paperwork and bureaucracy dodging, amusing and sometimes dangerous faux-pas, including turning left where there was a ‘no left turn’ sign right in front of a police car (yes, he pulled us over and no, being a dumb forrin-er does not excuse law-breaking  – I think Officer I’veGottaGun’s exact words were “I don’t care if you come from China, you still have to obey our traffic laws”, stupid questions asked and stupid answers given, UEOs (unidentifiable edible objects), menu mistakes (well, really, how were we supposed to know that fried chicken steak is actually beef?) and deep, challenging questions such as why, in a country where everything is set up to ensure the highest level of convenience and the lowest level of human input, do most of the tin cans come without ring pulls? Yep. It’s been intense.





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