Wednesday, March 01, 2006
gosh - this got a bit political!
Well, despite my cheeky posts earlier in the month about gardening in our t-shirts, and despite the fact that we already have flowers blooming in our garden and palm trees growing on our front terrace, my village has experienced it's first proper snowfall in several years. Most winters see a few flurries that don't add up to anything, but for the first time in recent memory (that is - mine) the snow fell and LANDED!!
I was sitting doing some work at my computer and got up to get myself something to drink. When I looked out of the window I had to drop everything and go outside. It was a winter wonderland! The beaches were covered in snow, the cliffs were white, and within a few moments I was soaked through. It was glorious. Once it stopped falling it stayed on the ground for an hour or so. Usually snow here falls and melts immediately.
The trouble with this sort of weather is that this part of the country just isn't set up for snow. An inch fell three winters ago in London and people were trapped on the M25 highway for something like 18 hours. That scared the government a lot so now the briefest mention of snow brings out the Gritting Lorries (that's Salt or Sand Trucks to those of you across the pond.) It's difficult for me to understand all of this fuss coming from a country that is completely designed around snow - driving in it, staying warm in it, coping with moving it, and basically getting ON with it.
I spent the last two days at a training session for my job. They were trying to teach me how to be a salesperson and sell to British people. I realized all over again that I am not in Kansas anymore, Toto. I'm not from around here. I've lived here for so long that I have largely stopped noticing people's accents. I have stopped seeing everything as new and novel. I have become as comfortable here as I am in Canada. So often I forget that I am in ENGLAND. I am in another country. They do things differently here.
This global community that we are building is an amazing thing. We can fly all over the world and see fascinating and spectacular sights. We can live in another country and get along with people and speak different languages. We can talk over the internet, eat Japanese food at our corner restaurant, and argue over which team is going to win an Olympic event. We can coexist on the same playground. I think, however, that many people are forgetting that we are not all the same. We look the same - we can all bleed and cry and dance and love and sing. But those songs and those dances and the things that make us cry are different. So much of today's global news is about one country or even one man or woman who is trying to put their own values and their own needs onto another country or group of people. It happens in the UK, it happens in Canada, it is happening in countries all over Eastern Europe, it's happening within the E.U., it's happening in the Middle East. It's everywhere.
I guess I am just saying that I wish that the rulers and even the ordinary people of the world would just remember that they are all coming at each other from a different page. We need to remember that all of those pages bring baggage and confusion and laughter and misunderstandings and richness and diversity. I think that if we all just remembered that we are all fragile, we are all unique, we were all babies once, and that we are all just trying to figure it out, we'd all get along a lot better. Why do we find that so hard?
Posted by meghan at 10:12 am