"TBT - A Florida Yankee In King Arthur's Country"

Last Thursday I was in the U.K. visiting family. It was my first visit to the British Isles but the country did seem somewhat familiar. I grew up in the Pacific Northwest, so I am used to dreary cool weather with its lush green countryside. And of course everyone spoke something akin to the English language. But I had to often ask them to repeat themselves - yet no one seemed to have difficulty understanding what I said. Humm . . .

The English people are terribly civilized - courteous in every way, written signs of every sort everywhere, apparently a smoothly running society and not nearly as chaotic as America. Although they drive very fast on the wrong side of the road through very narrow streets - I did not witness a single vehicle accident! I did see some rude behavior and something like 'road rage' where two car drivers stopped to cuss each other out. I guess they did not have guns to settle their dispute like we do here in this country.

For a small country they have some big native species. But many islands around the world are noted for either over or undersized species. In this case I am referring to the ravens and pigeons being bigger then what is found at home, and the huge Oak trees. Looking at those magnificent trees made me realize why Britain ruled the seas for hundreds of years - they had an abundance of gargantuan oak trees to build their ships! So - does Britain owe its greatness to Oak trees?

Yes - I saw some of the sights of London, including statues of Capt. Cook and Admiral Nelson. But where was the statue of Darwin? He made as much a contribution to the world, if not more, than any of the others. The highlight of my brief visit to London was the British Museum, where I was able to see first hand authentic icons of past civilizations. No 'Disney World' synthetic experience here!

Red seems to be the predominate color in this country. Makes you think about how much British blood has been spilled in nearly every major country (and some minor ones too) over the centuries of conquest and colonization. In the vast tracts of newer housing outside of London I saw rows and rows of red brick homes that looked like imitations of homes made from red legos. Maybe this country helped inspire 'Legoland'?

I look forward to returning to England again for a visit my family there, and to see more of their historical places. But I am bringing my lunch with me. I have never been to a place with higher prices for terrible food!