29 June 2007

Bloggin' USA

A brief hiatus to take in a family holiday in the USA. I'd like to say I came back from the trip full of insights into cross cultural difference. But, actually, when I come back from a trip to the States, I feel more like Rip Van Winkel. When holidaying in Europe, it's hard to avoid contact with the UK - English newspapers, BBC World on the hotel TV, British holiday makers pack the beaches. In the US, the international news vacuum allows you to retain a sense of perfect isolation. So when I return to the UK, it's like someone has erased a portion of my memory - I don't get the satirical jokes on the radio, someone important dies and I don't find out for months.

This time when I came back it was as though the UK had been frozen in time for two weeks and it was I who had moved on. Gordon Brown was still not Prime Minister, the weather was still lousy, the Tories were still bleating about grammar schools - absolutely nothing had happened. And within five days we have a new Prime Minister, apocalyptic floods, terrorist bomb threats and Tim Henman's annual anguished exit from Wimbledon. Maybe America doesn't really exist, but is really a tear in the fabric of space-time. It would certainly explain why the jet lag lasts a week, and you can't buy Oreo cookies in the UK shops.

1 comment:

PW said...

If you have one of those hiatus hernias, Hoffy, you really ought to see a doctor. But double check there's no propane gas cylinders outside his consulting rooms.