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Published: November 4th 2007
To me there are two Englands. One is London, the other is the rest of it. Heres where the playdough comes into it.... London is like if you put the playdough in the middle of the table and tell the kids to go for it, everybody grabs as much as they can and starts playing with it, sculpting it and moulding it into what they want it to look like, according to their ideas and plans. Some kids dont get any playdough, while some get heaps, if your lucky someone might share and their might be some collaborating plans, but at a table full of four year olds its pretty much every man for himself. Meanwhile, there is just a blue smudge left on the table where the complete blob used to be.
The part of England that isnt London seems to have taught some discipline in their kindergarten and there is much respect for what the playdough looked like when it first got dumped on the table. This is where I found all my stereotypic (does that make it more or less real) British things, where it felt that people could actually exist without being drawn into the frenzy
Sampling Cambridges Finest
There was a beer show on the weekend i was there, with hundreds of beers from the surrounding districts.
of London. It felt real, and somehow more... fresh. I dont know if thats quite the right word and this probably doesnt make sense, im just trying to get down the extent of the fact that what you feel in London can vary so much from what you feel when you get out. I saw real English Country Gardens and Universities steeped in tradition, so much so that you feel more scholarly just from walking around the vast grounds. Age old houses and dusty second hand bookshops that you know hide so many treasures that you dont know where to start looking. Produce markets and hedge mazes, fish and chips on an overcast grey beach, surprisingly picturesque coastline and winding roads leading to more, slightly narrower winding roads leading to National Trust farmyards and a multitude of surprises. A theatre perched on the edge of a cliff with the swirling grey blue sea behind it. Mouth watering roast pork and room for dogs to run and a fort in the creek. Green, and blue and yellow colours, not just painted on. I guess you get the picture that I feel more at home in these countryish areas than in the
big city and this can account for some of the feeling of trepidation whenever it was time to go back to London, but dont get me wrong, there is much to love about the big bustling crown jewel (just not when you are doing a walking tour IN THE HAIL!!!). I can see the merit in living there because it is so easy to get to Europe and the pound is super strong but I loved getting out into the different shires.
Heres some pics of the charming, chipper, y'alright? Little Britain, including family that i spent a lovely week with in Devon, a big thankyou to Nick and Kathy for having me and hope everythings up and running. Love to Lizzie and David. Also Cheridas Aunty Wendy, who fed us like queens and toured us around in her tiny car on the tiny roads.
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