Saturday, August 18, 2007

What I loved about being back in the UK

1. Seeing my friends (and my former dog). That was just soooo good, picking up in one case after almost 10 years!
2. Seeing Ayr where I used to live. It's changing, like all towns everywhere, not always for the better, but it was just so nice pottering round the little streets and into the shops (which have all changed).
3. Seeing my solicitor. Yes, well - he's lovely, though, and his bill wasn't too high either.
4. Eating British food, like a cooked breakfast, school puddings (of a high class in Dartington - a German guy there I swear comes back every year just for the break and butter pudding), and surprisingly many curries. It was institutional food mostly, with the quality far better in Dartington than in Durham - and of course I had wonderful meals with my friends.
5. Being able to converse easily - I had not appreciated how stressful it is to live in a country where I don't speak the language well (but there's only one person who can fix that); it was just so nice to speak without having to plan it, and to be able to crack jokes and understand jokes, and being able to understand everything when I could hear it.
6. Being able to understand how people operate and what they talk and think about.
7. Buying British newspapers on paper in the morning.
8. Being able to run in a pleasant climate.

What I did not like:
Being told what my identity is, and constantly having to justify my Scottish identity. My weird German accent makes people think I'm German. I'm not, though I had been such in the dim and distant past. I chose my national identity, and it was a lot of hard work to get there. Being born into a national identity is, erm, child's play - anyone can do it. (When I speak German, I have a British accent - even they accept me as British!)

This is not a problem I face abroad.