What’s a Crumpet?

In England, they call chips crisps, fries chips, and cookies biscuits. They spell many words differently than Americans do such as tyres, defence, colour, centre, and programme. They say aluminium (five syllables), and I say aluminum. A stove top is called a hob. I asked if the word hob stood for something, like Hot Oven Burners. I was looked at strangely, and frankly told, “It’s just called a hob.” Okay then, moving on…

They also don’t have many actual intersections on their roadways.  They have roundabouts instead.  Speaking of roads, theirs are WAY too skinny.  Why do they not make the roads wide enough for two cars?  Driving is like going through a gauntlet, very nerve racking, which is why I haven’t driven here yet.  I witnessed my first incident of road rage here when a trucker yelled out his window, “Fu**ing wanker!”  British charm at its finest. They have cool traffic lights that go from red to yellow to green, then from green to yellow to red.  You get a warning that it’s about time to stop and one that it’s about time to go.  Instead of Yield signs, theirs say Give Way.

My favorite sign so far is one I saw in London that said Good Behaviour Zone. (Note the spelling of behavior. I love all these little differences.)  A crumpet looks just like an English muffin, only a little thicker.
Monday night we board a ferry to Belgium to begin the tour!
Published in: on February 12, 2011 at 7:00 am  Comments (11)  

I Rest My Case

Need I give any more proof that this 600 year hotel is very much like a carnival fun house?  I give you the hallway:

I cannot stand fully upright in this hallway.  Please don’t tell The Reverend, but that jackhammer toilet I told you about was hammering away yesterday morning whilst I was brushing my teeth.  (No, I wasn’t brushing my teeth in the toilet.  The hammering happens when the sink water runs too or for no reason at all.)  I heard a plop and looked over to see that his hairbrush had taken a swan dive off the shelf and landed in the toilet.  I retrieved it, rinsed it with hot water, and replaced it as if nothing was amiss.  Luckily for him, it was not his toothbrush!  All of my toiletries are kept far away from that beast of a commode!  If you are so inclined, I have uploaded pics to my flickr page of things I’ve found interesting here.  I have yet to add the pics of the interesting road signs which I find delightful.  I’ll add more pics every couple of days or so.  Here’s my flickr link:  http://www.flickr.com/photos/jamiedawn/

Published in: on February 3, 2011 at 12:01 pm  Comments (5)  

Oh How the Mighty Have Fallen

Our first four nights in the UK were spent in a lovely apartment with high tech everything.  I had to use a manual to learn how to work the stove.  The refrig, dishwasher, and washer/dryer were hidden behind those lovely kitchen cabinets.

The shower was SO high tech, that after experiencing scalding of the flesh and uncontrollable water squirting in all directions all over the bathroom floor, The Reverend got online to look up the shower maker, then he drew a diagram for us to follow to reduce the frustration of showering.  Here is the diagram:

We are currently staying in the worst hotel we have ever endured.  It is over 600 years old and looks as if no renovations have taken place except in the downstairs restaurant and pub.  This is very deceiving.  When one decides to stay here, one knows not the hideousness of the upper floors, and the cost is more than the high tech apartment!  Alas, we had no other choice, other than sleeping in the train station, since the other hotel in town was fully booked.  How I long for the days of manuals and diagrams. Now, we have no in room phones or clocks, the toilets sound like jackhammers (and not just when flushed, but at unexpected times out of the blue as I found out the hard way upon my first sitting), the doorways are so low that The Reverend and Tater Tot’s foreheads have taken a beating, the bath towels are always damp (Do they NOT have an adequate dryer?!) and the worst thing of all is that ALL the floors tilt.  When I say all, I mean ALL.  Taylor put a water bottle against a wall, and the bottle rolled down to the bed.  It’s like staying in some kind of carnival fun house.  If you think I am exaggerating, just look at how much the floor lamp tilts.

If I sound like I’m complaining, I’m not.  We’ve laughed our fool heads off, and all of this is making our trip memorable.  The only thing terribly missing is that we don’t have our Courty Ree with us, since she is at school. I did one touristy thing so far:  I toured St. Alban’s Cathedral. Taylor’s band, *Crown *Jewel *Defense, has kept us busy, and I will write more about *CJD in a later post. For now, I will leave you with an image from the glorious cathedral.

Published in: on January 30, 2011 at 2:20 pm  Comments (6)