Tuesday, 9 August 2016

Eurotrash in London

hot weather outfit

Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall,
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall.
All the King's horses, And all the King's men
Couldn't put Humpty together again!


This is what I was thinking about when I was walking around in London. Yes, I'm feeling a bit snarky today, and I'm having real trouble controlling my sarcastic side. I thought I should warn you, in case you prefer to just look at the pretty pictures...

But first, about this outfit... It's very casual, maybe even a bit sloppy. But it's perfect for a bit of sightseeing (= walking around more or less aimlessly) on a hot and muggy day. This was one of those weekend London mini breaks Professor M and I are so fond of. This time we wanted to see the Georgia O'Keeffe exhibition at Tate Modern on Friday evening, then spend Saturday shopping, sightseeing, and taking a few photographs. And I had every intention of telling you about the wonderful exhibition, but then this post just sort of turned into one those rants...

I like London 

I find London very interesting. I like its energy, creativity and multicultural vibe: London has always been a very open, welcoming city, and people originating from all over the world now call themselves 'Londoners', having made this vibrant metropolis their home. I wonder how long this will last, though. Walking around London now I kept thinking that it was a city on the brink of being closed in, cut off from the rest of the world. Why? In the June referendum on whether the U.K. should remain in the EU or leave the EU Londoners voted to remain (as did the majority of people in Scotland and Northern Ireland). Unfortunately, the rest of the U.K. did not...

So, my little sightseeing tour was a bit bitter-sweet this time: I no longer see myself as a part-time resident in the U.K. but as one of those undesirable EU nationals the Leavers are so keen to get rid of. Which explains the deeply sarcastic title of this post...

London
London

I got thinking about all this because after we saw the exhibition, we had dinner at a nearby restaurant, then walked back to our hotel a few blocks away. Both at the restaurant and at the hotel we were served by very friendly, competent and hardworking Eastern and Southern European staff. And it's not just hotels and restaurants but also public transportation, hospitals, shops and finance that rely on workforce from the European Union. And this, the EU nationals working in the U.K., was the bone of contention for many people who voted for leave in the referendum. Obviously, this is, and will continue to be, a sore spot for me, given that both Professor M and I are 'European', now suddenly referred to as 'migrants' (instead of, say 'tax payers'...).

Anyway, I was just wondering what would happen if all EU nationals working in the U.K. suddenly just vanished? Or simply didn't turn up for work tomorrow, but went on strike? Just a thought...

And what about the populists politicians,  who will they blame for, well, everything, after Brexit? After all, it's so very convenient to outsource the responsibility for your own incompetence and shortcomings on someone else. I mean, whatever the problem, there's always someone you can blame it on: the 'elite', 'Europe', Brussels bureaucrats, immigrants...

I did warn you I was going to be sarcastic, didn't I? That's my way of dealing with loss and acknowledging my feelings.

Yes, I'm grieving. It's perfectly normal to grieve when you've experienced a loss, whether you've lost a loved one, a friend or a dream, or your right of residence in a country...

So, in the spirit acknowledging my feelings, I'm  just going to give the middle finger to all the well-meaning but clueless people who say it's not a big deal and it will be all right or just get over it already. And no, it's not 'just politics'; it's my life. The U.K. has been a big part of my life, and my husband's life, for the past 20 years (my husband works there, and we do have a second home there, after all...), and Brexit will change that life, one way or the other, but certainly not for the better.

But, personal grievances aside, let's just pause for a moment to consider the bigger picture: the Berlin Wall came down less than thirty years ago. And now new walls are being built all over the world. Or, in this particular case, perhaps a moat is a better analogy...

harem pants over 40
over 50 blogger

Outfit details: 
t-shirt: Gap (old) / trousers: OneLife / sandals: Clarks / 
sunglasses: Michael Kors / bag: Adolfo Dominguez
outfit photos by Professor M, all other photos by Tiina L

London
London
London

Oh, and because I'm a bit of a control freak (well, I like to think I'm in charge of at least my own life...) and I believe Humpty Dumpty deserves better, I rewrote the poem:

Humpty Dumpty  got into a tiff
Humpty Dumpty was pushed off a cliff
but Humpty survived and climbed out of the moat
and sailed away in a nice new boat...

Tiina
FOLLOW:
SHARE:

18 comments

  1. Ooh I like this!
    It fits into my feelings right now if you read my post. We are feeling the pain of closing barriers too, even over here in Australia.
    It seems the world is more and more fearful and politicians and media are fuelling the flame!
    I wonder where it will all end so your poem is perfect to give me hope.
    All the best in your grief.
    Xo Jazzy Jack naturalmedley.blogspot.com.au

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, walls (both physical and metaphorical) are coming up everywhere, it is scary, it makes me worried thinking about what's going on in the world. I think we all should do our part to maintain the open society we cherish, the question is how...

      Delete
  2. I understand your grief. I believe that we have screwed up the physical world, that climate-change is going to force large-scale disruptions, that homeless refugees are going to start moving around to escape bad places, and that there will be an increasing sentiment to CLOSE OUR BORDERS; i.e., keep out the poor people fleeing bad situations. The worst qualities humans have (expressed now in nationalistic terms) will emerge as people cling to what they have and uncharitably deny others a bite of it. Brexit sounds like an example of this; support of an idiot like Trump is another example. I fear the trend will only continue, lessening the appeal of cosmopolitan cities like London. So, I grasp your grief for what London was and what it will likely change into.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, I would definitely put Brexit and Trump in the same category, something in the future we, or future generations, we will look back as 'signs of the times' or examples the particular shit storm that hit the world...

      Delete
  3. London is such a beautiful city, I'd love to visit some day. I think I can feel the energy. I like this casual relaxed outfit! Love the colors you combined together. I always admire your photography too! It reminds me of the days when I never left home without a camera - thousands photos in my archives which I showed in one venue or another, but not in my current blog. Makes me think of a new type of posts, it could be interesting.

    I understand your anger, Tiina. It's an awful feeling to be excluded, it just never feels right. And grieving takes a lot of time and efforts to heal, no matter what caused it. I love the way you rewrote the poem! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Natalia. Writing (even fiction and poetry) has always been my go-to way of expressing myself, and right now I feel the need to express my sarcastic side, one way or another...

      Delete
  4. I can understand your feelings. If I have to live life again, I would move to the UK.Well, before brexit. I love that country. Si, I can understand your feelings, but have no idea how you are feeling. To feel not welcome in the country you are living in. I can only hope for you that that feeling will fade away.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't think the feeling will fade away, it's time for Plan B...

      Delete
  5. I went to London a long time ago and just loved the city so much! It's so beautiful! I'm so sorry over what has happened over there for you.

    http://www.mylittlenest.org

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It'snot just EU nationals in the U.K. who are feeling the loss. There are also a lot of British people (both in the U.K. and living abroad) who are anxious about the future, and grieve the victory of small-mindedness over open society.

      Delete
  6. I just returned from London after visiting 21 years ago and I loved the energy of the city. It was exciting to be there again and experience it with my kids. I can't imagine what it would be like to live there now with all this uncertainty.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The mix of cultures and influences is part of the charm and contributes to the energy and creativity of London. After Brexit, with a more closed in atmosphere, I suppose London will be a less fascinating destination in the future.

      Delete
  7. I can only sympathize with you , particularly as the outcome seemed so unexpected and was based on such flawed logic . I hope in time the situation becomes clearer soon and you will feel happier about visiting the place you also have called home.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nobody knows what will happen. But I think of myself as a 'European', and at the moment London, or the U.K. does not feel particularly welcoming, or like home, and I wonder if it ever will again.

      Delete
  8. You are absolutely entitled to your snarkiness, Tiina, given the circumstances. So you just keep writing snarky posts if you need to! I love your tee.

    Thanks so much for linking up On the Edge of the Week! I hope to see you again this week.

    Shelbee
    www.shelbeeontheedge.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much. I'm having some trouble keeping my sarcastic side undel control these days, but maybe it's better to let off some steam every once in a while.

      Delete
  9. I was sure I commented on this post. Either in my head or it went haywire. Good post.
    Greetje

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Greetje. Sometimes comments just disappear. Weird...

      Delete

Blogger Template Created by pipdig