We arrived safely in Phoenix last night. We are all quickly recovering (read: sleeping), spending time with family, and enjoying the Arizona weather before we travel to Toledo, Ohio to give our final presentation.

While we are adjusting quickly, here are a few things we've noticed that may sound familiar to those of you who've experienced reverse culture shock after being in Asia (and likely other developing countries).

Here's how you know you just got back from Asia...

  1. You keep getting in trouble for throwing toilet paper in the wastebasket.
  2. You find yourself wading through traffic and when you look back you're surprised to see your friends walking to a place on the street with yellow painted lines.
  3. When you go out, the smell of clean air—and absence of the smell of burning plastic—surprises you.
  4. At first the vast space is relaxing, but then you start to feel a bit lonely.
  5. The Caesar salad at Starbucks that used to look tiny now looks big. On the other hand, the high price tag makes you weep. 
  6. When you get your wecome-home soy Americano (size medium because you really don't want too much) at the airport, you're  sure they tripled the sizes while you were gone.
  7. You accidentally speak in special English at the grocery store checkout line—"You have bag, plastic one?"

We're glad to be home and miss our new home in southeast Asia. We can't wait to share our stories with each of you.

Photo: "I knew you had to be T-birds." We had an impromtu reunion with the two people on the right. The man, a T-bird alumn '10, noticed us around the hotel and said he instantly knew we were T-birds. "Why else would such a random group of people be working together and talking about business investment in Myanmar?" And to his point, it makes sense that he—an Indian who is working for a Korean oil and gas company in India is exploring business opportunities for the company in Myanmar and Thailand—is a T-bird.