Making a little bit of Britain abroad? What do xou do?(8 Posts)
well the sun is out for what seems like the first time this year and I, as a fan of River Cottage and Jamie At Home, am busy dong the rural thing out in Bavaria, Germany. Finally it is apple harvest time and I am busy picking the "Jacoubis" or St James Apples, to make juice tomorrow with a big crusher, apple press and steriliser which I will syphon into two crates of old mineral water bottles I scrounge from the local "Getränkemarkt" or off license. I'm starting to harvest veg from my allotment, another nod to the British way of life.
So I'm thinking of what you do to feel a bit like home is with you. Year round it's PG Tips, British telly and a Friday pint at home. Over in Saudi when I lived there it was listening to the very British sounding Radio Bahrain or the odd run with the Hash House Harriers (those who don't know what they are Google them), or a pint on a British Aerospace compound.
In Outer Mongolia I visited the Steppe Inn on the British Embassy for some real beer and British chat.
When I was in India I saw the old British hill stations like Mussoorie with their English cottages and rose borders, and the British Empire named "The Mall" with a "Picture Palace" at one end and a library at the other. In Naini Tal in Uttar Pradesh (formerly known as the United Provinces) where my father was posted for R and R during his National Service days in Ceylon there was a Hotel Elphinstone with a bust of Queen Victoria in the lobby.
My point being that wherever you go around the world you'll always find little bits of Britain established by some homesick Brit such as myself. I've got a home designed rose arch I built a few years back, with grapes and geraniums drooping all over the place.
Anyone else know of examples of "Britain" abroad?
There is an english shop and english butchers in Belgium. I prefer the Belgian versions...
Travelling in South America we didn't see that much british influence. About the only place that I can remember was an english restaurant in Cusco where you could have a delicious sunday lunch. Except I didn't have it, I had the curry instead.
New Zealand just feels like a cleaner version of Britain. Culturally there didn't seem that much difference.
I found that there was more American influence around the world - MacDonalds, Oreo biscuits, Pepsi and Coca Cola in the most remote of places.
Radio 2 and Radio 4 over the BBC iPlayer. I love hearing of M8 traffic jams that I'm not sitting in!
Kilts and bagpipes on Australia Day!
Marmite toast for breakfast while everyone else is eating nutella sandwiches.
Vfemme the funny thing about bagpipes is they sound better in an exotic climate.
I'm thinking of hearing them at full blast in a British Aerospace compound at 100F+ at 2am in summer here...
What I do to keep sane:
Make cawl a caws and hang the flag out the window during internationals
Admire my german husband in his welsh rugby shirt and laugh as he winces while he watches
Make pots of tea with oatcakes with Caerphilly and branston pickle
Play Elgar in my car, very loudly and with the roof down and sing along
Watch Pobl Y Cwm and the eisteddfods on S4C
Pick up a four-pack of Guinness and a pack of poppadums from the English Shop for that authentic 'British' weekend....
Mint sauce to have with my roast lamb.
Also small cultural things, like my kids go to bed at 8.30 rather than 10 p.m!
In NYC i would go to Tea & Sympathy for tea and scones or a traditional roast and puddings with custards (but you can actually buy imported clotted cream from Dean&Deluca if you make your own scones)
In L.A., Santa Monica has a 'little Britain' with the trad British Kings Head pub, and a couple of 'tea shoppes' where you can also buy Birds Eye fish fingers, Marmite and other UK made products.
I've had cream teas or variations of it all over the world but the High Tea at Raffles in Singapore stood out with its cream and durian filled sponge cake! (gag)
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