the holy grail of the trip 😉
So this is the last in the series of photos that I took whilst visting my little isle a few months back. I will stop banging on about being homesick for a bit- however that is near impossible as its something I feel on a daily basis.
I wanted to write a little about how I feel about my home country and its goings on. I am just going to sit here and type and let it be cathartic. Whether you agree of disagree with me, these are my thoughts and feelings and how I view the world and country where I am from at this precise moment in time. Its more a subconscious stream of tangled thoughts and emotions.
I am always one to defend and care about the UK, I constantly compare everything here (here being Barcelona incase you didn’t get that I have called this hot, dusty vibrant city my ‘home’ for 9 years- nine bloody long years). I like being from a country where education, arts and liberal (ish) thinking are welcomed and celebrated. I feel proud about an open discussion and that we can talk about things that have happened in the past (they are not swept under a horrible veil with wounds cut so deep and never to be spoken of- like here). I like that when I am any where in the UK there is diversity and not just a sea of blank white faces staring back at me apathetically. We are independent, original and diverse. We celebrate the good things and have a sense of nostalgia- this coming out in our music and our food etc. We don’t just bulldoze over old archaic treasures. We preserve and celebrate them. We believe that everyone has the right to health care and education and that it should be top notch and FREE! Our social system is in place to support and help others not as lucky and born into riches. We don’t depend on our families as much as here in the south where there is NO social or housing support. Our grandparents are still not working and picking food out of the rubbish bins in order to survive. We don’t see these daily struggles as much on the streets as I do so starkly here.
However now I will take of my rose tinted glasses and notice the contempt that has been breeding in the UK. Perfectly green mown lawns, houses upon houses that are all the same waving their little blue flags proudly- or worse those awful yellow and purple things.
Little boxes with a little space for a new car or two, perfectly lined up in a row. Essex being a fine example of this. Contempt breeding through twitching curtains. Prejudice forming. People who don’t go out and speak with each other. People who will demand to know why, in their opinion, why a seeming fit person has the right to a blue disabled badge and they will snidely make passive aggressive comments or just be rude in general. They feel put out and like some sort of unfairness and injustice has been made just because they can’t see what is there (visible or invisible illness and disabilities). Something which is a deeply private and personal issue and has been hard enough to get some sort of recognition because this new system, this voted system decided by people who do not know us, have made us feel stigmatised and embarrassed and has pointed fingers. Lazy and liars is what we are- without knowing our stories and what has happened in our lives-quick to judge and even quicker to believe what has been peddled in this media war. Where has this hatred and sense of having to right the world when its has nothing to do with them.
Where has this ugly contempt of others come from, where we can no longer offer a helping hand and look others who for whatever reason are less fortunate than ourselves? Where is the society in that? DO we not have a social responsibility as fellow citizens to make sure our elderly, sick, needy and anyone else who happens not to be born into money and riches as a birth right our help and support and compassion, understanding and all the rest?
When did we decide to all be judges and point fingers and generally fuck over other people for a sense of self entitlement a pat on the back because you are fit and able to work etc? When has it been ok to damn people and shame them because they have not been as fortunate to be dealt with the same hand or luck. Or simply being human and making a few bad choices down the line. When has it been ok just to sit and watch this all and advert our gaze onto some sort of fake keep calm and bloody carry on mentality? Later to point fingers when people fall down and sit high above them judging and deciding what happens. And mocking, oh the mockery. Lets talk about understanding and maybe education instead of despising and labelling people? Lets talk about programs across the country such as in the arts and education and youth work that help support this idea instead of just throwing people onto a heap and hoping they will disappear and when they don’t pointing our fingers and acting holier than thou as you read your dailymail over your lovely oak kitchen table, in your well designed kitchen, in your box with your two cars and television and feel smug because you are so much better than the rest. Because you have made it and been fortunate to rise above whatever struggle and strife. Then on top of that feel like it is ok to drag people less fortunate than yourself down.
I am angry and sad and upset and I HATE seeing the worse in humans. I hate this level of us and them and immigrants and foreigners and not being good enough for what you consider right.
Its cool though, will look forward to your blank, white flat pancake faces as you get pissed and fall out of wherever you came from barely able to control your faculties, because you insist on acting like a complete dick and can’t take your drink and then get patched up by an excellent hospital system here because you can because we are lucky enough to live in a union with our neighbours that allows you to travel, live and work and allows you to enrich your life and further yourself with new experiences and culture. Instead you don’t, you shout and speak in english and think that anyone who has an accent is beneath you and you smile patronisingly at them because you can’t even make an effort to understand what they are saying in your language in THEIR country. You nod blindly and pretend that you are open as you drink your “continental” Ri-oh-HAA and eat your CH-OR-RIE-ZOOH and pretend that you are so worldy. When you are not.
Lets not get started on the amount of poorly written, lies and garbage that the UK media has presented through out this election and after. Its scary that people can not formulate opinions and votes have been cast out of this fear of others, our neighbours and fellow humans. Us and them rather than everyone together.
I still however feel amazed and impassioned and have so much gratitude being where I am from, and knowing the special amazing people that I do know that are smart and willing to change for the better. I am excited and ignited with hope when I see people wanting to fight the good fight. Let it be one hell of a fight to change this level of contempt, ignorance and just plain complacency. Not everyone is out to steal or put you out, some people are just not quite as lucky.
So England (UK) You are an amazing place and I long for you, I long to be there and part of you and enjoy your amazingness. I need change though. I need to see you care and your people are good people wanting to be part of an a society that cares and nurtures everyone who needs it, especially those that need it the most.
I miss your beauty and potential and the fact that its OK to miss and be disgruntled with these things, I miss your places and architecture, food and its people- some of them anyway. I am homesick but for the good and the bad and it being simply where I am from. As I said I am in it for the good fight to make it better and more fair. To overcome the bitter disappointment at the outcome of the recent election, not just politically but the bile that has been bought to the surface by those unexpected and expected ones who lack compassion and understanding. The media who have whipped up a storm and waged a war, that is peddled with lies and untruths (from every side I may add). Something has been ruined and tainted and its time to rebuild it. You can actually do one if you are prepared to think that Broken Britain is because of those less fortunate than you are. Broken Britain is because the rise in this xenofobic, Peniaphobic, lack of compassion and understanding and wiliness to believe everything you read.
This post was supposed to be written about its need little nostalgic cottages and niceness. However that has all be a bit tainted. I need to speak about this. This affects me both directly and in directly and having a partner who is not British, living in the EU, being supported by a wonderful health system and seeing things from the other side makes me sit up and take notice and want to do the right thing and fight for what is just and fair and right. I feel proud for having my life enriched thus far and hope that the system in the UK is as opened armed and helpful and tolerant of non UK people and even those who have gone away and come back again. I hope that there can be a good debate built upon this disappointment and things can be improved.
Remember not to judge what you don’t understand, know or are fearful of. You don’t know the story behind the face or the person. In fact please, as my sister stated, do not hide behind your thinly veiled racism to make you feel justified. Its disgusting and wrong and remember directly affects everyone around you.