Sunday, July 24, 2005

Arriving and some observations

I have received the comment that all my posts thus far have been about leaving, and none about arriving. I've also received some queries about our safety and well-being.

We are fine, all of us. I don't know anyone who has been directly affected by the recent terrorist actions. But as I said to a friend, we cannot let these things change the way we live. Whether there are religious fanaticists blowing up subways or health clinics, random violence from people with guns who shouldn't have them, or from men abusing women in societies that tolerate such actions, we must live in the way we believe is right. I believe in tolerance and peace.

As for the more mundane aspects of arriving, our container should arrive tomorrow. We will have to store everything somewhere, as we don't yet have a house nor jobs. We are actively searching for a car.

But since arriving, there are things I've come to appreciate in a very short time. I thought that living in California spoiled me for fresh fruits and vegetables, and that the farmer's market was something I would really miss. Little did I remember from my many visits here in the past, and I have since learned more. You see, England being so small, things are closer together. That includes the farms to the towns. You can drive 10 minutes and get to little farms, many of which sell their goods right on site. As you drive around, there are small signs up advertising fresh eggs and various vegetables. And on Thursdays, there's a man who comes around here with a truck full of fresh vegetables, fruit, and eggs. The milkman delivers 3 times a week, and in addition to milk, has juice and eggs, too. (Eggs are a recurring theme). Withing a 10 minute walk there are 2 greengrocers, as well as 2 bakeries, 2 butchers, 1 fish shop, and a specialty cooked meat shop. There are supermarkets within walking distance, too, but the products at the specialty shops are superb. Dairy products are much tastier, and the eggs are phenomenal. You can get a greater variety of both (dairy and eggs); for example, there's single cream, double cream, whipping cream, and clotted cream as well as the usual skimmed, semi-skimmed, and regular milks; you can buy duck eggs, or eggs from certain breeds of chicken. Amazing. And the prices of produce is significantly cheaper than in the Bay Area. So some things here can spoil a body, and that body at the moment is me!

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