I always feel that if I haven't posted for a couple of weeks I should follow it up with something worthwhile.
Sorry, that won't be happening. I have a sliver of time in which to get my thoughts down, so this will have to do.
I will admit that I've been toying with the idea of wrapping up AliBlahBlah. Five years is a long time. My life is getting crazy, my migraines are caused by stress, they are happening with increasing, debilitating frequency, and I'm really having to try to cut back on my to do list. Plus there is a lot going on right now that I'm not sure I can write about, and will definitely struggle to put a positive spin on.
On the other hand, I agree that you are not done with blogging as long as you are still composing posts in your head, and that's still going on, so I'm at a crossroads. Plus, William and Kate are coming HERE! next weekend, and not only that, they will be hanging out at my husband's place of work and we may have wangled ourselves a psuedo invite - and how can an Expat blogger pass up that juicy morsel?
In the meantime, on this 4th of July weekend, my first as a bone fide Amercun, I bring you an odd difference between the two countries. Flag-worship.
We were at a party recently with a giant Amercun flag waving in the breeze. Tis the season after all. Lucy is a tomboy in every sense of the word, and her new game is called 'ka-cha!' which is basically her running around karate-chopping thin air and making elaborately fierce poses. We need to teach her to yell "bow to your sensei!!" then the entertainment would be complete.
This is what happened: Lucy was running around ka-cha!ing and - maybe on purpose, maybe by accident - she 'ka-cha'd' the Stars and Stripes (which was hanging a bold 10 inches from the ground).
All hell let loose.
She was reprimanded by EVERY American present - except me. They were kind but firm, the American flag was sacrosanct, and had to be treated with respect, it represented the country and all who sailed in her. Meanwhile I'm thinking 'are you kidding me, she's two, please hold the civics lesson until she can use a toilet unassisted.'
I don't think there is anything in the British non-constitution that is held so reverently. The monarchy, the flag (of which there are many), even tea - they are all treated with a healthy disrespect. While these things are taken seriously, they are not followed zealously or overtly. The reaction to Lucy hong-kong-phoeeying the flag was really surprising to me - even after 15 years of living here. LK took both girls to one side and gave them a talking to. He later told me he was brought up to believe that if the flag accidentally touched the ground it would have to be burnt. Really? Even he would not be nudged on the position that Lucy needed to be told, in no uncertain terms, that what she had done was wrong.
After having gone through my Naturalization, and all it entailed, I do know why the flag is important to the concept of Nationhood. It stands for the country in more of a way than a head of State can. It represents the country, the unification of the separate States. We The People etc etc. Except this is also a country that prides itself on 'question authority' (you see it on every other bumper sticker shouting at you from the freeway). Maybe that's just California - but again, maybe that's why I'm surprised.
I think I still have some Naturalizing to do.