Sunday, 14 November 2010

Dear England

I miss you. There, I said it.
I know I've never really told you this enough, but I love you.
I never really appreciated you and how much you mean to me. I was enticed by the bright lights of America. I fell for blockbuster films and far too many episodes of Friends. I left without turning back.
At first I was on the rebound. America had everything you didn't. There were boys with cute accents and free gym membership and more types of peanut butter than I could even dream of. Everything was bigger, everything was better and I knew right then this was where I wanted to be.
But then there was the lack of vegetarian gravy in the supermarket, everyone staring at me for the way I dress in a sea of jeans and hoodies and doors regularly shut in my face when the person in front of me didn't look behind then. People couldn't tell what I was saying sometimes, or they didn't care enough to try. I missed having a cup of tea made in a kettle and people knowing what I meant by biscuits and understanding that not all biscuits are cookies.
Suddenly bigger didn't always mean better. Bigger meant long bus rides to even go clothes shopping and having to wait until someone with a car could take me to buy food. I realised that Mall of America, the Mall of my dreams, was a two-hour drive away. I realised that Chicago, which looks so close on a map, really takes 8 hours to get to. The weather started to turn, and I started to miss our mild winters.
I started to miss being able to go out drinking with my friends. I missed my little country, where in a two-hour drive you can get from Manchester to Birmingham, or Birmingham to London. I started to miss trains, getting me from A to B for what now seems like pennies.
I missed pound coins after trying seven dollar bills to get a Diet Coke and not one of them working.
I missed people taking me seriously without asking me where I was from.
I missed blending in and not having my accent make me a topic of discussion.
I'm sorry England. I'm sorry for all the times I moaned about the rain, and all my vows to meet an American boy and leave you forever.
I'm sorry I complained about my dirty town. Stockport, I'm sorry. You're a dump, but you're my dump. And you're a dump with Top Shop.
England, I'm okay with just the choice between smooth and crunchy peanut butter. I don't need to have thousand varieties. I'm okay with the rain, I have a leopard print umbrella.
I'm sorry I left you and abandoned you. I'm sorry I thought the land of the free would be better than the land of home.
I hope you take me back again, and we can start again.
I will always love you.

Charlotte Crowley

5 comments:

  1. The UK will always be my home, and though I didn't leave it voluntarily, I will always feel the same way.

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  2. I love your letter to England. I have never been but have heard lovely things about it. This makes me think of that Laura Marling song, Goodbye England. Great tune.

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  3. Katie Brockington15 November 2010 at 16:42

    This has made my life Charlotte Crowley! Please be a famous journalist and make me happy with articles like this!
    Thank you
    xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
    Also, England misses you too.

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  4. That was a nice post about home.

    The couple of times that I spent overseas for a while I usually would have an intense homesick moment or two.... one the other hand there is homesick of the other sort where you've been doing the same thing at home so long that you feel the need to take off for a bit before life passes you by. At least for me.

    Anyway, while you are in it for your stay over here, you should find a way to make it south to the nicer part of the country.
    In the south people hold the door, say thank you, and there's probably vege gravy at Whole Foods. Best of all the weather isn't colder than a witches tit; it's in the 60's today. No promises on the accent gawkers, but most everyone is accent challenged around here.

    I'll get you some info on where to go and a guide or two if you want. I just hate to see you come all the way over and not come to the friendly part of town.

    Yours truly,

    Hunter

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  5. Great post! It's almost like we have switched places.. I'm currently in England studying for the year and I'm originally from Minnesota!
    I can feel your pain, I'm missing the States, and realizing how much I love it there, even though I enjoy England, it's not my home. Like Dorothy said "There's no place like home!" (not sure if an English person will get that reference?)

    (btw, I found your blog while on college candy)

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