I’m in England. I haven’t been here since 2003. Last time I came we didn’t have blogs around to tell you all about it. And I’m so thrilled. I don’t know why, I was so stressed before I left home, trying as always to pack everything together, to prepare the journey, the presentation, the dinners for my family back in Larisa.
And now I’m here and I’m exhilarated. I love everything. As soon as I get through baggage reclaim and I see a sign saying “Chapel” I look towards the arrow and all I see is an entertainment arcade full of casinolike games. Wow! I say to myself people here have taken religion one step too far (later I see there are other signs for chapel further on, so it was just a cultural misunderstanding).
Then I take the shuttle bus to the train station and I just love the way they have filled the grass with crocus flowers, and it’s all artificial I know, but they have made it seem so natural, so random, I just love it. All this rain is good for something, their gardens and green areas are everywhere well kept and maintained. You wouldn’t know spring is here if you didn’t check the calendar but, they make an effort, there are flowers everywhere, outside hotels outside public buildings outside pubs and restaurants.
I love it I just love it, it must be the language I love most cause I could stay there and listen to people talk and try to understand where they are from , like we used to do with Maria back in Rhodes, when we were sixteen and we would meet boys from Manchester all summer long. The boys have sure grown. I’m on the coach now and it isn’t as bad as I was afraid of. Our driver, Mark, is a funny guy “Are you a teacher ?” he asked me as soon as I gave my ticket? “How would you know?” “I know everything darling, I’m a man”. Now tell me when was the last time you had an intelligent conversation like that with a bus driver of all people?
So this is England. The land where people have also two mobiles but the one is an iPhone and the other a Blackberry. The land where safety belts are obligatory on coaches. The land where bus drivers apologize when they arrive early at their destination in case they have inconvenienced us!
That was day one in the land of discounted books and public libraries (I checked into one while waiting for the coach). I’ll keep you posted!