Anecdotes, Part 4

{My Anecdotes are posts in which I comment on my observations of unexpected cultural differences, or just amusing incidents that don’t really warrant their own individual blog post.}

1. Well, today is finally The Day. Brexit deadline is finally here, for real this time! No more extensions! Except that no one really knows what’s going on or how things are going to change or what it will mean for them, personally. It’s still a mess that no one knows how to handle. Continue reading

Fourth of July State of the Family Address

It’s been three years this month since we moved to London for two years. We just renewed our visas to stay on for a fourth.

I don’t know what it is about Fourth of July that makes me wax wistful and nostalgic (and a bit rambly)… I guess maybe because we moved here in July, so it’s nearly the anniversary of our big move; and it’s our home country’s birthday, and so I’m feeling more patriotic than usual. (I’m not particularly patriotic, generally.)

I’ve always thought that Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday, but maybe it’s a tie with the Fourth of July. They have a lot in common, when you think about it. Both are all about coming together with friends and family and neighbors and eating and drinking and enjoying a nice social atmosphere, with no gifts given or received. And they are both holidays that can be celebrated by all Americans, regardless of religion. And, unfortunately for expats, both are celebrated only in America.

We love you, England, but we are still Americans. Despite today being a school day and work day we are still celebrating our Independence Day. I feel a bit envious as I see the pictures friends post of all the fun things they are doing today—Fourth of July BBQs and parades and pool parties, eating watermelon and setting off fireworks, just classic American summertime nostalgia—while we are having only a small family celebration this year.

I have really fond memories of big neighborhood Fourth of July BBQs and fireworks displays from my own childhood. But our kids’ childhoods will just be a bit different than our own.

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Searching for fairy doors on the common today, making their own childhood memories

The girls still loved dressing in red, white, and blue; waving flags and sparklers; and helping me make patriot parfaits for a special dessert.

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Football’s Coming Home (But We’re Not, Yet)

We’ve had a proper summer here in London, and E’s school isn’t even out for summer holidays yet. In May, we had those first days of glorious, perfect weather that makes everyone in London go outside and act giddy. I walked down the road on those days thinking how grateful I am for the opportunity to live in London, and how proud I am of us for being brave enough to take the opportunity, and how much I really freaking love living in London.

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Learning the Lingo

When I lived in Bath the year I studied abroad, I didn’t actually get to know that many Brits. My program(me) was all American students from colleges on the East Coast, and we all pretty much stuck together for everything. So other than our British professors and administrators, I didn’t befriend anyone my own age from here. I briefly, sort-of dated some local bloke named Ian, if you could call it dating. Our interactions basically consisted of drinking Bacardi Breezes at dance clubs and text messaging. He did threaten to buy me dolphin jewel(le)ry, so you could say it was pretty serious.


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