Just As I Thought

Repatriated

I’m back! Did you miss me?
It’s been interesting comparing and contrasting the UK and the US. For instance, when going through immigration at Heathrow, the officers were quite polite and friendly. When I got back yesterday, I was kind of annoyed by the brusque, almost unwelcoming attitude of the immigration officers at Dulles, and it was a line specifically for U.S. citizens. Gee, would a “welcome home” have been so tough?
I often complain about the intrusion of advertising here, but in Britain it’s so much more ubiquitous that I almost feel ad-free here at home. When you drive up to Heathrow airport, the huge “Welcome to Heathrow” sign is dwarfed by an advertisement for a bank, three times larger. Even the outside of the gates and jetways have ads plastered on them. (Speaking of jetways, we boarded a bus from the gate and drove out to the plane, walking up old fashioned steps to board.) Taxis, rather than the small printed ads on top like we have, are painted completely with ads.
Oh, and let’s talk about traffic: I would never drive in London. People are completely mad on the roads, and when combined with the makes-no-sense street system complete with roundabouts, hard-to-find street name signs, and directional signs that are beyond confusing, well… you take your life in your hands. If you ride on the top of a double-decked bus, be sure to close your eyes.
Driving home from Dulles airport seemed gentile and safe.
So, I’m back home where I have 180 tv channels, gas is only $2.07 per gallon, dinner last night cost $17 instead of $40.
Of course, there was a tornado and hail the size of golf balls; not to mention swarms of cicadas.
I guess it all evens out, eh?

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