Thursday, July 31, 2014

What NOT to do in England

Having been in London for a fortnight with my fiancĂ© who has never been to England, it was quite funny watching him try to understand the culture.  After having put up with him laughing at me for quite a few years because of my ‘mistakes,’ it was nice to see the shoe on the other foot, as it were.

These were some of the fantastically outstanding moments of our holiday

The Local Fete

If you happen to go to a perfectly English fete and there just happens to be a group reenacting the Civil War (which is a bit random, if you ask me) and you decide that you really, really need to talk to them because you are American and they are kind of “your people”, do not, I repeat do not shout out “The south will rise again!!!”  This just makes people really quite uncomfortable and take a couple of steps away from you.  People who go to local fetes tend not to know what to do.  The poor reenactment man was a little surprised too…
England - or America??
The Underground

When you have picked up a copy of the free morning newspaper, you do not need to read out loud to your fellow tube travelers the stories that interest you.  Although we appreciate how funny some of them are, it just makes us cringe to be so, well, loud while on the underground.  Yes, the trains are noisy, but do you see anyone else talking?  It just doesn’t happen.  The underground is not a social place – we don’t like to talk to strangers, or even anyone we are traveling with actually.  If we must talk to our friends, it is done in a hushed whisper.  Do not draw attention to yourself, that would be terrible.

Oh and FYI – this also goes for over ground trains too.  You will be quietly "tsk, tsk'd" if you are so bold as to talk loudly (or at all).

Shhh... No talking!
Fast Food

When you are in a fast food restaurant (let’s say Kentucky Fried Chicken, just for the heck of it... not that it was KCF, but it might have been) you should probably not expect the menu to be the same.  Just because you like a certain meal deal in America, doesn’t mean they will have it in England.  You probably shouldn’t get mad because (a) you can’t see what you wanted to order; (b) the person behind the counter has no idea what you're trying to order; (c) you have no idea what the gentleman with the extremely strong Indian accent is saying and (d) your order, when you do get it is wrong.  Just saying..


Look right, then left, then right again.  Not the other way around.  I don’t know how many times I had to put my arm out to stop someone (my fiancĂ©) from getting himself run over because he was looking the wrong way.  It sometimes even tells you on the floor which way to look for goodness sake!


Don’t keep trying to get in the driver's side of the car, especially if you’re not the driver.  It makes you look a bit silly (and, in fact, I now know what people think when I still try to get in the wrong side of the car in America).  Also, don’t slam your foot on the imaginary brake pedal every time a car comes towards you.  It’s okay, you’re a passenger – the driver’s got it all under control.  *smile*

Now, I know he will read this (he better had) and I want to tell him I love him to bits, but it was just so funny watching all his confusion.  I just can't wait to go back and do it all over again!

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