Elsewhere, England

So, the most pervasive reason in my mind for not liking England all that much is that it is boring. England is not an exciting country like I imagine Brazil or Japan to be. London is unique in its diversity, its rapid pace, its extensive pollution and opportunity. Beyond, you find suburbs. Beyond those suburbs you come to countryside. Beyond the countryside, you find other cities, smaller, with stranger accents. Beyond those cities again, suburbs, countryside. A lot of England is countryside! This really surprised me when I moved from my Greater London residence to my uni accommodation in the Midlands. 

 

In the Midlands I found boredom. And it was an oasis. I learned to appreciate countryside and clouds and moving slowly. I learned to use this expansive environment to create fun, not to rely on shops for entertainment. In Coventry city centre, I was horrified at the bleak architecture and the sallow faces of near enough everyone I passed. I enjoyed a different kind of city in Birmingham, which I am yet to take full advantage of. I have been to Durham and Hastings, Dover and Dymchurch, Oxford and Rugby, Leamington Spa and Coventry, Brighton and Portsmouth and Cornwall. I am amassing a greater understanding of England (I can't say Britain, I have never been beyond English borders in the UK) and am trying to move away from this dismal image in my head of a half-empty Northern town with a weird name, with a 100% white British population unused to dark faces, probably speaking in an accent I struggle to understand, with only some shit park and four smaller-than-usual high street fashion retailers. England is more than this, I am just pessimistic.