You see, right there I have readers shaking their heads and asking, are you mad?
British people are about as unpatriotic as any nation can be likely caused by a succession of government which rather than pull us together, drove us apart to create division and detract for their own failings.
Is the UK really so terrible?
In my opinion, no, it’s not. As a country we have lost out way rather a lot, society has some very real issues. However, the bedrock of the country, the land and the climate, they are much as we would expect for these lands.
What do I hear those around the world say of the UK?
- It’s so quaint, all those cute little villages – Sure, we have a lot of cute old villages dating back centuries but, that is not who we are, that’s just a tourist ideal
- Isn’t it always raining in the UK? – Actually, just about every year we ban the use of hosepipes in a lot of counties because we are in a drought situation, we simply have not had enough rain. Sure, we do get rain. Unlike some other countries, there is no rainy season, it can happen any time of year. It used to be mainly April we would have showers but, global warming lost that for us.
- It’s so cold there – Way up north in Scotland and especially on the hills, sure, it can get really cold. Realistically, if you as an interest person not liking the cold will avoid those areas and look down south. Right now we are around 28°C, tomorrow I see will be 30°C and, that’s quite warm for anywhere! It’s very humid though.
- At least I don’t need sun block as it’s either going to rain or be too foggy! – Look, rain I already covered but on it, don’t let it fool you. Even through those showers the UV index can be really high especially in June/July. As for fog, there is a generation of Brits won’t have seen it ever! It was a construct of heavy industry with factories and homes using copious amounts of filthy coal and other messy stuff which hung in the atmosphere. We have cleaned up considerably in the last few decades. I am 60 and whilst it was regular when I was a kid it is more a morning mist now and rather than being pollution it’s just nature evaporating the lying water.
- Your food is so bland, you don’t eat anything exciting or tasty. – This is an absolute myth based on a misunderstanding. You see, our land is very multicultural, we are a blend of hundreds of different nations and, over the years, our recipes have been shared and just about anything goes. We have comfort food which some might consider bland, only because it’s generally badly cooked. Fish & Chips needs to have fresh fish, the fresher the better. Many restaurants cook fish from the freezer and who is to say how old it is? Of course it’s going to have no flavour. We stop using those places mostly. The Sunday Roast? Yes, unavoidably that can be bland, no two ways about it. Sauces have to be added to make it OK. Shepherds and cottage pie, not the same thing but similar. That’s down to recipe and the quality of ingredients. Cooked fresh with good ingredients there is no reason for it to be bland at all. The Great British Breakfast (fry up) … a little bit of a myth that one as it implies there is only one. There are many variations on it to the point that much of it and occasionally, all of it is not fried at all! (I prefer it that way). But, back to the multicultural nature of the UK … Curry is one of our most popular take out meals (from India), Kebabs often follow from a night out (Greece). Indeed, we have restaurants with food from all over the world. Just lately I am seeing more Filipino venues showing up as well.
- Beaches, what’s the point, you don’t have any good beaches? – There is a related truth in that but, it’s complicated! The sea even on the hottest days, never gets higher than 20°C, the in the cooler months it’s around 6°C and although some hardy people do swim in it, on the whole we don’t do much more than paddle. We do, however, have some amazing beaches, some of the best and great surfing beaches too. Sadly, the government we have had the past 13 years have allowed our seas to get contaminated with filth. Rich corporate water companies continue to pump raw sewage into our waterways making many of them unsuitable or unsafe to use.
- Isn’t everything just so expensive there? – Hands up, the answer is yes. Sadly any excuse and hospitality gets greedy. A little inflation and they raise prices to exceed it and when inflation lessens, those prices remain high. Right now we are suffering food inflation way over 16%. A standard McDonalds is close on £9 now almost double what it was a year ago and, for example, nearly three times the cost in the Philippines.
- So, when it’s not summer then it’s just winter right? Oh no! – Spring and Autumn are two of the nicest times to be here. The winter is absent of colour, the leaves are off the trees, flowers do not grow, it’s just drab. Then spring happens and it comes to life! Birds are busy mating, flowers bloom, trees blossom, it’s a sight to see, honestly. Autumn follows summer and nature starts to shut down ready for winter. The colours on the trees are incredible, all shades of yellow, orange, red, it’s magical. The past few decades winter has been mild, it’s rare to get snow except on high ground. For several mornings there will be ice on cars and sure, it can get a little chilly even in the warmer parts getting down to -9°C on occasion but, mostly it’s just somewhere between 0° – 10°C. If wearing the right clothes it’s not really a problem. In summer, well as I said above, it can be really hot but, at the same time, it can change! I have known it in the low 20’s in May and then a week later, we do have snow, it can happen, it’s rare.
- Your homes are all really old right, you have outside toilet’s and bath in front of the fire? – Sure, in many old movies that’s totally correct but I have always lived in a house with an inside toilet and a bath which has hot and cold water. Sure, as a kid in winter we had ice on the inside of the windows it was so cold but, that was 50+ years ago. Most, the vast majority have centrally heated homes and at least one full bathroom or shower. So, even our older places will be mostly fully upgraded by now.
- Just how old are your places? – The newest are still being built, the oldest go back centuries. It is not unusual to live in an 18th century property and certainly 19th century. Let’s make no mistake, our history goes back 1000’s of years. A church in my town has parts of it dating back to the10th century.
Let’s look at some pictures of the UK
As you can see, if the tech works. the country can look so different depending on location and time of year. It is rarely plain. If you know where to look there is so much to see, it’s certainly worth seeking out the guide books and exploring outside of the big cities.