I grew up in South Africa. Now I live in England. Words have different meanings everywhere, don't they?
In South Africa, a "yard" is somewhere at the back of the house where you keep your bins and have a washing line. A work space in a way. In England, a "yard" is either a stable yard, or an old measure of length. In the States, it is a garden. In South Africa, and in England, a garden is the outside leisure area of your home, and is not usually associated with work areas. Maybe a greehouse or a shed will be the work areas at the bottom of the garden. Garden sheds are very English things. You will not find them in South Africa. That sort of stuff will be in the yard. Am I confusing you??? We are all supposed to be speaking the same language here!
Most gardens here have patios, and now the "deck" is all the rage here as well. Like the American "decks". I have rather too much experience of "decks" on ships. Only problem with decks is that they are increasing the rat population across the country, as they are finding that rats thrive under decks. I don't have a deck. Therefore, I assume, no rats. Yuck. I do not do rodents, as I have stated on a regular basis.
Most of our roads are tarred, not concrete, and so are our pavements, which are sidewalks in the States. "Stay on the pavement, sweetie" might not be good advice in the States! In cities, pavements are block-paved at times, or cobbled, or bricked. Our letters are delivered by a postman, who puts them through the door, but if we want to post things, we have to go to the post office, or to a letterbox which are usually regularly spaced through the vilage or town or city.
Most of the central heating here is gas, and the boilers are small and either in a kitchen cupboard or in a linen cupboard. In South Africa, there is no central heating and no mainline gas. It is open fires or electric heaters if you want to be warm. We do not have basements here, and for the life of me, I cannot understand why, when space is at such a premium. If you do have oil-fired central heating, you have a tank outside the house. My sister has a massive tank in Switzerland, which is only filled once a year. Her boiler is huge and in a separate room in the "basement" where the washing machine etc is kept. I dream of a room like that. Here, washing machines are either in the kitchen or in the utility rooms which are in most newer homes and very small. And the washing machines are all front loaders, not top loaders. In South Africa too. But in New Zealand, they are top loaders. Sigh.
Most people I know, cook on a gas hob, and have an electric oven. In South Africa, we call them "stoves" and here they are "cookers". I have never got used to that one. We use Centigrade temperatures here, and in South Africa, which went totally metric in 1962 or 3. I only ever learnt the metric system, so to say that I was befuddled by weights and measures here is an understatement.
In South Africa, things (like humans) are weighed in kgs. So I might weigh 60kgs (hahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!!!!!! - she picks herself up from the floor after an attack of hysterical laughter) but HERE, humans are weighed in "stones". Stones????? A stone is equal to 14 lbs. And there are 2.2lbs to a kg. So it is like going back to the dark ages when I have to estimate weight. Which allows some latititude, thankfully. I am foreign, after all. But airlines weigh baggage in kgs.
It is a little confusing here, because some things are metric and some in imperial measures. Miles not kilometres, pints not mls for beer, but not for milk...that is in litres. And in Switzerland they use dls not mls. Deci- not milli-. I remember being taught the "King Henry Died a Miserable Death Called Measles" way to remember the metric system when I was about 7. (And I am 53 now) - Kilo Hecta Deca Metre Deci Centi Milli to remember which way to jump the point to change quanitities. Simple. But there are no pints or stones or miles in that.
All the above musings were inspired by Barb saying that she finally understood that a garden was the same as a yard. I got a little carried away. There is no right way or wrong way to refer to things, it is just something that you have to adapt to when you move countries! Chips are crisps here. Flapjacks are oat biscuits not dropped scones. Our bread rolls are your biscuits, our jam is your jelly. Our courgettes are your zucchini. And so it goes.
The one thing I am really grateful for is when my US friends post photos of their ingredients for a recipe...I can blow up the photo to see the labels. So I know how much a stick of butter is now. Or what baking soda is ...Bicarb or baking powder...that was always the question!
And now I have run out of steam. And my son is up and wants to use the computer too.
Have a great weekend!