Back in 2007 I remarried to Larry. This is our wedding picture, one of them. Nice isn’t it! At the time his dad was still alive and in his 80’s and Larry was his carer. Dad lived with Larry. I went to America to live and every now and then I returned to England to be with my own family. I became a gypsy! I think I was always a bit of a gypsy really and this confirmed it. The fact that I could live this double life so easily came as a surprise to me and everybody else. I won’t say it was easy. Sometimes it was very hard and there were many mountains to climb and valleys to cross. However, our love endured under these difficult circumstances and we are still together after six years.
Larry’s dad died just over a year ago and just recently Larry has come to live here in England with me and my ex who still dwells in the same cottage as me. Life will be even more interesting from now on!
Last Tuesday I went to Heathrow to meet Larry and bring him back to the cottage. It was a magical moment when I saw him coming through the gate at ‘Arrivals’. I had been waiting for an hour, hanging on the rail as I got more tired and a bit anxious. Finally I saw him coming through the doors.
Larry has been with me here for a week now and I thought you would like to know his thoughts on his first week in England? We are all curious about what it is like to live in another country, aren’t we. Well here is his take – an American in England, part one:
‘My First Week in England – Being Three Years Old Again! – Living in a foreign country is like being three years old all over again. Everything is new and different and can be learned for the first time, even if you are 68. Some examples (some expected, some not):
• Cars drive on the wrong side of the road and come at you from odd directions
• Steering wheel, gearshift – all on the wrong side of the car.
• Car is on the wrong side of ME, putting the curb and the rear view mirror also on the wrong side of me.
• Toilet paper comes off the roll in the wrong direction (I may feel compelled to fix that one at some point)
• Clouds look familiar but move across the sky at several times the normal speed limit.
• Sun comes up at least an hour too early here – 4:30 am (I should have that corrected by December I think…)
• There is this funny “u” that keeps popping up for no apparent reason, like in colour and flavour.
• Words that are spelled the same but pronounced differently, like conTROVersy instead of CONtroversy, etc.
• Other words have new meanings, like BOOT and BONNET – yes you can wear these here on a spring day, but they are also the front end and back end of a car
• Inanimate objects have hidden desires, i.e., “the car wants washing today”, the floors want vacuuming (excuse me “hoovering”!)”
• Ten words are often used where I would use only five, but it sounds so much nicer using ten. That is a skill is simply must master!
• You can watch an entire two-hour mystery movie on the “tely” with no “adverts” to make you forget what the movie was about. This means you need to go the toilet before the movie starts, like in a movie theater (excuse me – “theatre”)
• The “toilet” here is the entire room, not just the porcelain thing you sit on.
• You can still have your milk (and bread and cheese) delivered to your door here!
• A doctor will come to your house if necessary! Absolutely amazing!!
• One is rewarded, rather than penalized for being over 60 here. I have a “bus pass” that lets me ride the local buses for free! Even gives me a discount on the train to London.
• No sales tax (“VAT”) on food or children’s clothes here.
• I used to wonder where “the good ole days” went. It appears they went here in many instances. I have fond memories of things I used to do as a child growing up in the 50’s and 60’s. To my surprise you can still do them here.
• It’s fun being three again!!!Watch this page for my second week in England…..’
For some reason I can’t get the formatting right in this post. Sorry about that. I think it is a little difficult to read? Any helpful suggestions about font size etc. would be appreciated.