6 months in the Valley

 

Zes maanden geleden ben ik met mijn gezin verhuisd naar Phoenix Arizona. We hadden alleen elkaar, Floris zijn baan en een paar koffers met kleren. De afgelopen maanden hebben we hard gewerkt om ons leven op de rails te krijgen en inmiddels is dat aardig gelukt. Nu ik weer wat meer tijd heb, wil ik jullie graag wat meer laten zien van ons leven hier in de Verenigde Staten van Amerika. Ik vind het zelf wel leuk om in deze eerste blog iets te vertellen over het gebied waar wij wonen om daarna steeds wat topics aan te snijden die me hier opvallen. Het wonen in een ander land is namelijk best inspirerend omdat je in je eigen land dingen zo makkelijk voor ‘gewoon’ aanneemt. Veel leesplezier en laat gerust een reactie achter.

PHOENIX ARIZONA
Wij wonen in de staat Arizona. Deze is gelegen in het zuid-westen van de Verenigde Staten, is volgens Wikipedia ruim 295 duidend km2 groot en heeft ongeveer 6,9 miljoen inwoners (even voor je beeldvorming: Nederland is ruim 6 keer zo klein en heeft meer dan dubbel zoveel inwoners). Phoenix, is de hoofdstad van Arizona en volgens wikipedia met ruim 1,6 miljoen inwoners de vier na grootste stad van Amerika (in populatie). De stad is het hart van de Phoenix metropolitan area (als ik het over Phoenix heb dan bedoel ik eigenlijk dit). Een metropolitan Area is een druk bevolkt gebied met daar omheen enkele iets minder druk bevolkte gebieden die bijvoorbeeld infrastructuur, huisvestiging en/of andere dingen met elkaar delen.

Wij wonen in de stad Tempe (een van die omliggende gebieden) Op de foto zie je een foto van onze wijk (hier wonen we tot juli en dan verhuizen we naar een wijk waar meer gezinnen wonen). In Tempe is de grootste campus van Arizona State University (ASU) gevestigd, waar Floris werkt. ASU heeft trouwens vier campussen en Floris pendelt tussen twee daarvan op en neer. Voor de shoppers onder ons: ze kennen hier niet echt een centrum waar je kunt shoppen. Het is kleinschalig opgezet wat wil zeggen dat er overal kleine centra (shopping malls) zijn waar je kunt winkelen. Beetje vergelijkbaar met Batavia Stad. De stadskern noemen ze Downtown en daar hebben ze vooral veel eetgelegenheden. Over eetgelegenheden gesproken: WOOW! Wat een keuze! Ook in de winkels trouwens. Ik kreeg er in het begin serieuze keuzestress van (welke van de tien verschillende soorten M&M’s zal ik eens nemen?).

En dan nog iets belangrijks…. Phoenix is gelegen in een van de meeste zonnige gebieden van de wereld en wordt daarom ook Valley of the Sun genoemd. Er heerst een woestijn klimaat. Dat wil zeggen: lange warme zomers en zachte winters. Het regent hier bijna nooit (YIEHAAAA) en juli wordt gezien als de natste maand. Als wij vertellen dat we uit Nederland komen dan zeggen mensen regelmatig dat ze regen echt geweldig vinden. Dat snap ik als het in juli 50 graden is …. 😉 Het landschap is hier ontzettend droog. De Woestijn uit de film Breaking Bad geeft een aardig beeld denk ik (hoewel deze geloof ik is opgenomen in New Mexico, een staat naast Arizona). Omdat er ontzettend veel energie (en water) gebruikt wordt om gras mooi groen te houden en paden en parken te voorzien van prachtige bloemenperken, is het op veel gebieden wel heel kleurrijk. Daarnaast liggen er om Phoenix heen aan alle kanten bergen en zijn overal cactussen en palmbomen. Dat geeft vaak prachtige plaatjes.

We genieten van het mooie weer en de prachtige omgeving. Wat en hoe precies…. daarover later meer 🙂

 

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