A Love Letter to Britain

Britain, I was just in you. But then I had to leave. It’s the story of our relationship–not quite as tragic as Romeo and Juliet, mostly because I can’t figure out how to put you to sleep and get you in my family tomb.

Not that I’d do that. Or anything.

But seriously. I was just in you, and then I had to leave, and now I’m sad. I like my home, and I love my job . . . but they’re not you, Britain. It’s not them, it’s me. I just can’t get over you.

Britain, the first reason I love you is that you are unashamedly enamored of the sausage. Your love of the sausage is true, and varied. Just look at this glorious bangers and mash, oozing with the juice of love. Or gravy, as the case may be:

I love that you pair sausage with mash. And with eggs and toast. And with Yorkshire pudding. And with chips. And with…. well, you’ll eat sausage and anything.

And that’s just fine with me.

Britain, the second reason I love you is your vocabulary. Barmy! Chundered! Rubbish! Bog roll! Toemahhhhhhhtoes! Coriander! Doolally! Wankers! Chavs!

I can use your words forever, although your lovely accent hasn’t made in a dent in my hideous Midwestern nasality.

“Your accent gets stronger when you’re tired,” he said, meaning sharp, like a laser beam, despite all you’ve tried to do for me.

Britain, the third reason I love you is your television. First of all, the sublime. Downton Abbey! Monty Python’s Flying Circus! Poirot! But don’t think I only love you for your sublime. I also love you for your ridiculous. You got me through my PhD. thesis, you did, with this beauty:

Without Bargain Hunt, I wouldn’t be where I am today. I mean that, Britain, and I love you for it.

Britain, the fourth reason I love you, is the fact I don’t feel I need to be perfect. When I’m on your Tube, for example, I’ll see a gorgeous girl sitting across from me. But when she smiles, she has the teeth of a platypus. Or I’ll see a man (Mr. Bates!) who should not be attractive. He might look a bit like a pork pie in a hat, with a strange discoloration on his neck (what IS that, Mr. Bates?). And yet, at the mere sight of his walking stick, I forget whether it’s check or bill. (Bill!)

Britain, the fifth reason I love you, is your names of public sites. Cockburn? Cockfosters? Knob End? Cunts Lane? I find you endless entertaining, because I’m immature, just like you were. A few centuries ago.

Britain, last but not least, I love you most because you’re full of so many people I love. So many amazing friends, so many inspiring people, and so many laughs. I keep meeting more every time I go, to add the piles I have already.

So, Britain, I love you. Unashamedly and without reserve. Maybe I’ll live in you again someday, and in the meantime, I’ll keep visiting. Keep some sausage warm for me.


Posted by Nicole Peeler

Author, Professor, Lover, Fighter

16 thoughts on “A Love Letter to Britain”

  1. Awww. You make me miss Britian and I've never been.

    Though actually, I'm going to have one evening to kill in London coming up soon, and no idea what to do with it. I'm coming out of big meetings so something super lazy would be good. Any great ideas?

  2. I love Britain too, you just made me want to hop on a plane for 24 hours (and it takes A LOT to make we want to do that anymore) so I can go vist again.

  3. ha, ha, ha I live in Britain and it's all true!!! We are a strange little country in many ways but we do have the best bangers and mash! Hope you get back soon, you'll have to come 'oop north' and visit all the beautiful lakes and mountains in the Lake District, and you'll find some good place names there too!!

  4. I'd definitely go see a show. We saw the Ladykillers with Peter Capaldi on Saturday, and it was brilliant. Also saw the 39 steps last time I was there, and it was wonderful.

  5. I just had bangers and mash for my tea and then read this. Proper British 🙂

    I agree with Naomi You should come 'oop north' the Londoners have nothing on us. And we have really good sausages 😉

  6. I adore this! I love Britain from a distance sadly. I haven't been yet, but when I do I just know it's going to be amazing!

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