The Last of England

A long time ago I blogged Marc’s and my ten year anniversary trip to England.  I never exactly finished.  Tonight I finally got around to dragging out the last of the photos.  12-5 255

Out of all the things I saw there this is the one that most made me want to pull over and lay on the side of the road crying.  Why exactly was I put on the face of this earth if it wasn’t to live in that house?  If you want to talk about the meaning of life, this is the time.  Having a little trouble here.
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Which might all have to do with the fact that I have at least 40 copies of my husband’s resume floating around the UK.  They don’t listen, but it apparently doesn’t keep me from trying.12-5 024

A few overlooked pictures from Enysham Hall.12-5 017

12-5 055The English and their perverted road signage.  I had barely recovered from this one when we passed a “humped zebra.”  Seriously?
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Yes, we kinda noticed.12-5 094

So England was full of tiny cars.  And the biggest, baddest mini-vans you ever saw.  Why do we not have these?12-5 179

The swank town of Swindon.  Or close enough.  It’s all starting to blur these days.12-5 185

There are a lot more “pictures taken from inside a moving vehicle” where that came from….
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This is mostly where we left off.  London.  Dropped by Syon Park and then hit up Kensington Palace.  The place was a total rip off/tourist trap.  The building had been gutted of any furniture that might have given you any idea of it’s former functions.  Instead it was a museum with a selection of ill-advised “interpretative” art exhibits.12-5 447

I can’t even remember whose wedding dress this was.  That’s it, I need to go back.12-5 44812-5 445

Some day Aunt Megan might make these for me.  😉12-5 451

Kensington gardens.12-5 452

The zoo that is London.  The worst part of visiting England.  Don’t go there unless you have to.12-5 453IMG_0806

Our shack on the third floor.12-5 471

I loved the ghetto little neighborhoods tucked in behind the main buildings.  I also like how this counts as a street.12-5 472

We did attend services at Westminster and were lucky enough to sing some of my favorite knock-your-socks-off Psalms.  I made the most of it.
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As close as we got to Big Ben.12-5 463 12-5 468

Prince Albert Memorial.12-5 455

Prince Albert Hall.IMG_0826

Riding the Underground.12-5 470

Paddington.  Which, if I may say so, is in desperate need of a pressure washing.12-5 475And back home to the feed lots.  One of the things I couldn’t help but feel in England was the unexpected sense of liberty.  Maybe it was just the reckless driving, practical non-existence of police, and general freewill parking.  I especially enjoyed the more intuitive roundabouts, instead of our “stare blankly at a red light until it changes it to a green light” method.  It doesn’t matter if no one is coming for miles, you’re going to sit there.  And here we wouldn’t dream of parking anywhere but in a designated spot.  There, they park wherever the heck they want.  I’m not sure what the system was, and frankly we were just too American to park halfway on the sidewalk and halfway in the “road” like everyone else.  Isn’t there somewhere with a meter or something?

The other thing I noticed was that the English didn’t seem to be operating under any sense of oppression.  Personally, I was freaking out.  “Where’s the Office Max?  Where do people even buy stuff in Oompa Loompa land?  I don’t understand!  I need a Wal-Mart.”  And they would just stare coolly down their noses at me.  Totally indifferent to their entire lack of box stores and fast food.  They seemed down with the fact that their houses were too small to put superfluous amounts of stuff in.  They dressed like they came out of a United Colors of Benetton ad.  And they walked places.  They seemed to like it.  Wait a second.  Isn’t your government forcing you to buy organic food, drive miniature cars, and not buy clothes that are from China or that have first been flashily prostituted by Disney?  That must be terrible.

But I just wasn’t seeing it.  I’m not going to say that I’m down with any type of “down your throat” government.  But I don’t think their legalism was the cause of their apparent dignity, so much as the effect.  What I came up with?  You are more “free” when you are willing to shoulder the heritage of law and responsibility, than you are when you carelessly chuck it all to the wind.  A few emphatic hand gestures included.  When you have to compare the two, the lawless are the ones who will become slaves and those who “revere” are the ones who will be free.  Pretty much any way you slice it.  Liberty is always grounded in law.  And anarchy ends in mob rule.  Like cattle running down a chute.  How’s that for a little late night patriotism?  🙂

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