I Don’t Want to Visit England
I came to a shocking realization while watching the Opening Ceremonies of the Olympics.
I don’t want to visit England.
I want to live there.
I don’t want to be a tourist, to spend a few days racing from Buckingham Palace to Stratford to Big Ben, with barely enough time to wave at the royals, nod at the Globe, glance in the dungeons.
I want to have time to really explore, like a native. To sit in the Eagle and Child and imagine what it must have been like to sit there seventy years ago overhearing Tolkien and Lewis discussing their current works and debating theology.
I want to take tours of every place Jane Austen walked, imagine where she saw Emma meddling in the lives of her friends, where Elizabeth went to the ball where she first saw Darcy.
I want to eat fish and chips so much that the idea of them isn’t even exciting anymore. I want to ride the Tube, but not a double decker bus (because those are for tourists, of course). I want to say things like, “Bob’s your uncle”, “I got a bootful of fairy cakes for a fiver,” and not have to construct it using Wikipedia’s help.
In short, I want to live in England.
That is all.