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Marisawright

Must-read - The Road to Little Dribbling

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I've just read The Road to Little Dribbling by Bill Bryson and I'd recommend it to anyone contemplating a return to the UK after a long absence.

 

If you love the British countryside then it will likely strengthen your resolve to return, as there's plenty of warmly affectionate description of it. But it's also unsparing in pointing out the unwelcome changes that have occurred in the country in recent years - all of which are spot-on and may come as a surprise to some would-be returnees, so it's as well to be prepared!


Scot by birth, emigrated 1985 | Aussie husband applied UK spouse visa Jan 2015, granted March 2015, moved to UK May 2015 | Returned to Oz June 2016

"The stranger who comes home does not make himself at home but makes home itself strange." -- Rainer Maria Rilke

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I'm always surprised when someone says 'The UK has changed since you've been away' well no **** Sherlock, every country in the world has changed. We were away more than 12 years and found the changes almost entirely for the better, food for example has improved out of sight and is as good as anywhere in the world. The cost of living has dropped, again very welcome. People seem a lot happier and more content. Shops don't have 'cold' drinks stacked up in the window anymore lol. I almost wish I read books so I could give it a read lol


Loving life in Gods Country. Woohoo, look at me. 

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I've just read The Road to Little Dribbling by Bill Bryson and I'd recommend it to anyone contemplating a return to the UK after a long absence.

 

If you love the British countryside then it will likely strengthen your resolve to return, as there's plenty of warmly affectionate description of it. But it's also unsparing in pointing out the unwelcome changes that have occurred in the country in recent years - all of which are spot-on and may come as a surprise to some would-be returnees, so it's as well to be prepared!

 

I thought you were leaving? Actually bryson does have a knack for really being able to see a place. I read his book on Australia , and it was the Australia which I know and love that he was describing. Unusual as most seem to get it wrong. He has the ability to see beneath a country, which is unique. I'll look out for it.


Nearly there! Don't drop the ball now guys! Vaccines are weeks away. Stay safe!

 

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I thought you were leaving?

 

Yes I am. Some of the book did make me a bit sorry we're going, because it reminded me of all the places we hadn't seen yet. But it did also highlight a lot of things that I don't like about Britain today.


Scot by birth, emigrated 1985 | Aussie husband applied UK spouse visa Jan 2015, granted March 2015, moved to UK May 2015 | Returned to Oz June 2016

"The stranger who comes home does not make himself at home but makes home itself strange." -- Rainer Maria Rilke

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I'm always surprised when someone says 'The UK has changed since you've been away' well no **** Sherlock, every country in the world has changed. We were away more than 12 years and found the changes almost entirely for the bette

 

Ah but Bristolman, I don't believe you now. On another thread you finally admitted that when you first arrived back in the UK, there were several times when you were tempted to go back on the plane to Oz before you got settled. I should've bookmarked it! So obviously there must be some things about the UK that are not entirely perfect.

 

As for it being no surprise that a country changes - I know, and everyone should be aware of that, but I'm always surprised how often would-be returnees think they'll be going back to the same country they left.

Edited by Marisawright

Scot by birth, emigrated 1985 | Aussie husband applied UK spouse visa Jan 2015, granted March 2015, moved to UK May 2015 | Returned to Oz June 2016

"The stranger who comes home does not make himself at home but makes home itself strange." -- Rainer Maria Rilke

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Ah but Bristolman, I don't believe you now. On another thread you finally admitted that when you first arrived back in the UK, there were several times when you were tempted to go back on the plane to Oz before you got settled. I should've bookmarked it! So obviously there must be some things about the UK that are not entirely perfect.

 

As for it being no surprise that a country changes - I know, and everyone should be aware of that, but I'm always surprised how often would-be returnees think they'll be going back to the same country they left.

 

You really don't have to believe me to be honest and no need to bookmark it at all, I won't deny it. There were some wobbles early on but they didn't last long. When have I ever said the UK is perfect ? I have often said it isnt, you would have been better bookmarking those comments.

Equally it would be prudent to warm those who had been away from Australia that it has changed but in reality commonsense should tell us every country has changed.


Loving life in Gods Country. Woohoo, look at me. 

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I didn't really like the book. Bryson used to have a knack for providing unique insights and observations and still finding the world wonderful, this was the first of his books where he started sounding like a senior citizen - not in a good way, but in the way of putting on the rose-tinted nostalgia specs

 

He's done books before where he's warmly remembered a childhood in the 50s without succumbing to the concomitant moan about progress and change. Not this time

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In reality commonsense should tell us every country has changed.

 

Yes of course it should, unfortunately it's not what happens. Also, we may know that all countries change, but we may not know exactly what has changed. If people are wondering, Little Dribbling will tell them in a humorous way.


Scot by birth, emigrated 1985 | Aussie husband applied UK spouse visa Jan 2015, granted March 2015, moved to UK May 2015 | Returned to Oz June 2016

"The stranger who comes home does not make himself at home but makes home itself strange." -- Rainer Maria Rilke

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I didn't really like the book. Bryson used to have a knack for providing unique insights and observations and still finding the world wonderful, this was the first of his books where he started sounding like a senior citizen - not in a good way, but in the way of putting on the rose-tinted nostalgia specs

 

 

That's why it's the ideal book for someone 60+, thinking of a return to the UK. They're likely to have the same rosy view of the Britain they left, and likely to have the same reaction to the changes that Bryson comments on.


Scot by birth, emigrated 1985 | Aussie husband applied UK spouse visa Jan 2015, granted March 2015, moved to UK May 2015 | Returned to Oz June 2016

"The stranger who comes home does not make himself at home but makes home itself strange." -- Rainer Maria Rilke

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An author before my time but I thank each one of your comments. Went on to amazon, looked through his works and ordered a few of his books in hardcover to read during our week out in Greece :smile:

 

KnK


Karen & Ken | PRs done : Jun 16 | Moved to Aus : Dec 16 | Break from Life : Dec 16 to Feb 17 | Mel Rental, Jobs and City Life : Feb 17 | Mel Land Purchase : May 17 | Home Construction : Sept 17 | (Bye bye city and hello suburbia) Moved in : Aug 18 | and on to the next............

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I like some of his previous books and probably will give this one a try - interestingly I read Australia before migrating and it made me want to migrate even more, I have read it again since and I am so glad I no longer live there! I guess it's a case of selective reading on both occasions.

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"concomitant" now there is a word you don't read often around these parts. Almost makes me want to defenestrate myself in ignorance.

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I've just read The Road to Little Dribbling by Bill Bryson and I'd recommend it to anyone contemplating a return to the UK after a long absence.

 

If you love the British countryside then it will likely strengthen your resolve to return, as there's plenty of warmly affectionate description of it. But it's also unsparing in pointing out the unwelcome changes that have occurred in the country in recent years - all of which are spot-on and may come as a surprise to some would-be returnees, so it's as well to be prepared!

 

Bill Bryson loves the u.k ..its faults ,failings,and eccentricities .

He actually moved back to the u.s for good awhile back .

He think he missed us too much ,he is back here again now .

 

Must have missed the crap weather


BUT I DONT FEEL AFRAID

AS LONG AS I GAZE AT

WATERLOO SUNSET

IAM IN PARADISE

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Bill Bryson loves the u.k ..its faults ,failings,and eccentricities .

He actually moved back to the u.s for good awhile back .

He think he missed us too much ,he is back here again now .

 

Must have missed the crap weather

 

This country does that to people. I actually envy those people who in their minds paint an awful picture of this country so they are able to disconnect from it. Unfortunately I always saw it as it was so it kept drawing me back. How easy would it be to think of it as an expensive dreary grey place.


Loving life in Gods Country. Woohoo, look at me. 

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That's why it's the ideal book for someone 60+, thinking of a return to the UK. They're likely to have the same rosy view of the Britain they left, and likely to have the same reaction to the changes that Bryson comments on.

 

I meet that age criteria....and then some. I think that someone older has less illusions not more.

It has been anything but easy since I've been back (on a personal level), but far from regretting it, I don't even think about it.

I came home. Simple as that. I admit I came back for places not people, and both have not disappointed; in a pragmatical sense...

 

I bought Brysons 'Notes from a Small Island' years ago in Australia; and loved it. When I read it recently again; it irritated me, in part because I felt that Bryson had a overly rosy view of the UK (even back then).

Janet Street Porter apparently criticized Bryson for 'Dribbling' because he was not so flattering about Britain this time!

I might enjoy that book because perhaps he's now a bit more realistic, but I won't buy it because though he is a massive anglophile I find him a tad condescending.

 

(It's a two way street isn't it? People going out to Australia have an overly rosy view. I can't really blame them when they are seeking 'something better', but views like that inevitably lead to disappointment and distress when things don't match up to expectations).

 

........anyway now we will have Utopia! We are pulling out of the EU. All will now return to a warm glow of peace love and happiness. Won't it......?

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I didn't really like the book. Bryson used to have a knack for providing unique insights and observations and still finding the world wonderful, this was the first of his books where he started sounding like a senior citizen - not in a good way, but in the way of putting on the rose-tinted nostalgia specs

 

He's done books before where he's warmly remembered a childhood in the 50s without succumbing to the concomitant moan about progress and change. Not this time

 

I've just finished reading the book and I didn't really like it either. It followed the same formula as Notes From A Small Island but just wasn't as enjoyable. Don't know how he expected things to be the same after 20 years.


Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take but by the moments that take our breath away :smile:

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I've just finished reading the book and I didn't really like it either. It followed the same formula as Notes From A Small Island but just wasn't as enjoyable. Don't know how he expected things to be the same after 20 years.

 

Recently read his book 'At Home' after a slow start I really enjoyed this very informative read, especially If you like English (and some other) history then give it a go.


Enjoying life in Queensland

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Recently read his book 'At Home' after a slow start I really enjoyed this very informative read, especially If you like English (and some other) history then give it a go.

 

Yes it was a good one. My favourite book by Bryson is The Lost Continent. In it he wanders across the US in search of the perfect small town.


Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take but by the moments that take our breath away :smile:

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I'm not a fan of Bryson. Find his writing lame, his style distracting and his TV show on the old dart a little boring. While he himself has had a long association with Britain, he did return to his native USA some years ago, but recall he didn't last to many years.

 

I did enjoy what I believe was his first book, Notes from a Small Island, his entry from the Continent and stay at a B & B in Dover struck a chord. I still possess the book, but now find his style grates a little. I did not like his Australian book. It seemed rushed to me and revealed nothing new, but stereotypical clichés inducing a pinch me if I'm still awake state of being. I realise most did like it though.

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Guess I am one of those who still remembers Britain as cold and grey except for a brief and glorious 6 weeks ( in a good year)

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Guess I am one of those who still remembers Britain as cold and grey except for a brief and glorious 6 weeks ( in a good year)

 

I have memories of long warm summers but bitterly cold winters. Pics of me and my siblings as children taken in the summer - we are as brown as berries. We used to run wild in the countryside. I had an outdoor job in the Lake District (trainee vet nurse - farm animals) and it was very rainy there and snow in the winter so wasn't pleasant at times - grew to hate snow. I believe the weather in the UK is changing with winters starting later and summers being warmer particularly down south.


Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take but by the moments that take our breath away :smile:

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Guess I am one of those who still remembers Britain as cold and grey except for a brief and glorious 6 weeks ( in a good year)

 

Serious question here but why do you hold onto a memory that is so grossly inaccurate ? I think it is some sort of coping mechanism perhaps, imagine your old country in an incredibly exaggerated negative way and it makes your new life seem even better. We saw it with a friend who immigrated to Australia and he would constantly say 'Well you can't do that in the UK' and we would often say well we have done it but it goes down very well with Aussies if you are overly negative about the UK.


Loving life in Gods Country. Woohoo, look at me. 

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I have memories of long warm summers but bitterly cold winters. Pics of me and my siblings as children taken in the summer - we are as brown as berries. We used to run wild in the countryside. I had an outdoor job in the Lake District (trainee vet nurse - farm animals) and it was very rainy there and snow in the winter so wasn't pleasant at times - grew to hate snow. I believe the weather in the UK is changing with winters starting later and summers being warmer particularly down south.

 

Yes it's certainly not grey and cold most of the year that's for sure lol. This summer was really nice and my shorts were only put back in the drawer yesterday. A few months ago I was talking to my Mum on the phone and she said oh I understand you are having an awful summer, I said no what makes you say that and she said she saw something on TV about it. Winters since we have been back have been short and generally mild.


Loving life in Gods Country. Woohoo, look at me. 

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You're not fooling anyone bristolman.

 

Your mum knows the truth too.

 

It depends which part of the UK you live in. It could be 25C in London and 14C in Edinburgh on the same day.


Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take but by the moments that take our breath away :smile:

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It depends which part of the UK you live in. It could be 25C in London and 14C in Edinburgh on the same day.

 

Yes absolutely, it's probably not ideal to factor in Scotland.


Loving life in Gods Country. Woohoo, look at me. 

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