“To be born English is to win first prize in the lottery of Life” – Cecil Rhodes
…or Scottish, or Welsh, or Irish…or to move here from elsewhere and have Britishness thrown upon you. Yep, so the weather’s shite, we’re crippled by austerity cuts and our public transport’s a sham, there’s still loads to be grateful for…
Nature isn’t out to get us
Take Austrialia for example. Australians are great, and you can’t help admire their wonderfully healthy work-life balance. Their weather, which means year round barbecues and beach trips after work, drinking tinnies in the garden till the stars pop out, even in the middle of winter. Not to mention their rough and ready roguish natures, the breath-taking scenery, a natural love affair with cold beer and Kylie Minogue.
BUT, though that all sounds like heaven on Earth, they have to contend with mammoth storms causing flash floods that make the Somerset levels seem drought-stricken. Forest fires bigger than the whole of the British Isles and they have animals there that exist only to kill you. Fact.
We have traditions older than some countries
Yes, these islands, small, cramped and damp as low-rent bedsits they might be, are home to some of the most bizarre and wonderful traditions anywhere in the world. What other nation boasts cheese-rolling tournaments, bonfire night celebrations, involving carrying barrels of burning tar on your bare back and Morris Dancing!
Plus, we have Guy Fawkes, April Fool’s and Ferret wrestling. Being British, you can be continuously relieved that you’re not French or Italian and expected not only to be sartorially unsurpassed, but also enjoy wine and be good in bed. Pint of lager, please.
Our beer is awesome
Yes, we invented it. Well, possibly we invented it, and if we didn’t we ought to have. Beer: A drink that’s also a food. Liquid bread. We can enjoy it warm or cold, mulled, in pewter flagons or poncy European schooner things, so long as it has a foamy head and makes you go ‘Aahhh!’ and wipe your mouth on your sleeve after the first gulp it’s good by us.
OK. It’s not what we’re renowned for, and yes, we do need to erect some type of plastic dome to keep us dry half the time, but we don’t tend to get the seriously ferocious types of weather the rest of the world has to contend with. In Winter, it’s coldish and wettish, in Summer, it’s warmish and wettish, plus midges.
If it was more like Marbella over here, the insects would get bigger and we’d just get worse tempered. We’re a temperate place really, we get lots of rain, but that means we have lush vegetation, and you know where we’d be without trees and plants? That’s right, Warrington.
Not only has the British countryside inspired generations of artists, musicians and poets with it’s fabulous scenery, but our beautiful British Isles holds is great for another reason, the place names. Where else could you find places called Splott and Esprick, Ramsbottom, Penistone, Bushygap, Cockermouth, Shittington and Fannyfield. What’s not to love?