Inspired by last week’s prompt, I decided to try ‘something different’ with this post and take part in the ‘Friendly Friday Photo Challenge’, created by bloggers Sandy from ‘The Sandy Chronicles’ and Amanda from’ Something to Ponder About’. This week’s theme, ‘Isolation Cravings’, was too relatable not to take part, but initially I couldn’t put my finger on precisely what I was missing. Everything, of course. I miss spending time with my friends in real life, I miss going to restaurants or going shopping, I even miss mundane things like school or my Saturday job. But it was thinking back to VE day on 8th May that I realised I was especially craving typical British things. It was difficult to find a photo that encompassed all of the British things I’m missing, so instead my featured image is a section of my wallpaper, which has words associated with Britain written on it (you will also find a picture of a chip butty further down!)
It was touching on VE day to see people sat on their driveways and doorsteps, having ‘socially distanced’ street parties, complete with bunting and tinny music played out of someone’s speaker. It wasn’t the same, though. Street parties sum up Britishness almost entirely by themselves as events infused with community spirit – something that fills my childhood memories and something that I didn’t realise I was craving until now. And, as we approach summer, it will only get more obvious how much has changed. Come rain or shine the British greet summertime with garden parties, BBQs and summer fetes, which – despite the gallant efforts of some to hold ‘socially distanced’ events – will no longer go ahead in the same way.
Like Sandy, I also crave the sights and sounds of the city, but specifically my home capital London. This bustling, vibrant city, only a train ride away, now seems distant as most people struggle to remember the last time they got on a train. I miss straining my neck to get the first glimpse of the Shard as the train pulls into the station, I miss dodging the pigeons in Trafalgar Square, I miss my legs aching after trekking across Tower Bridge. Mostly I miss the people: the tourists, street performers and stressed-out business people.
Mercifully, we can still appreciate British food, and here I am thinking only about fish and chips. The Humble Chip Butty, a staple of British culture and the holy grail of takeaways, was actually the inspiration for this post, after I realised that my local chippie was open for delivery. Never again will I take chips and bread for granted!