September 12, 2008

“[Other people’s] holidays are an expensive trial of strength. The only satisfaction comes from survival.”

Filed under: Books, Science, Travel, Words/Language — liberrydwarf @ 8:20 am

All my colleagues are going on holidays except me. My husband is going on holidays, but not me. Facebook serves me up constant pictures of my friends’ holiday snaps. It’s as if the world is mocking me! Why can’t I have a holiday too?? I’ve earned it, dammit!

Therefore excuse me if this week’s links have the bitter taste of so-near-yet-so-far holidayness about them… *sobs!*

1) As I prepare for my trip (which is only 3 months away now!) I’ve got all the right travel books – Lonely Planet England, Discovery Guide Britain, and even Bill Bryson’s awesome “Notes from a Small Island.” But I don’t have this book… The Clumsiest People in Europe” . In the mid-19th century, one Mrs Favell Mortimer set forth to write a definitive travel guide to the world. There was just one problem: she had never set foot outside her native Shropshire…I’ll leave you to enjoy the wonders for yourself, here’s just one taste, her entry on Wales.

“Though the Welsh are not very clean, they make their cottages look clean by white-washing them every year, and sometimes they white-wash the pig-sties too.”

Well at least I’m prepared now, eh?

2) Still on the subject of travel, I guess – how hard is it to get what you want when you’re in “for’n parts”? The one thing my husband did last trip was make sure he memorised the Spanish word for Orange juice wherever we went, didn’t learn even the tiniest extra bit of Spanish but had that one key priority covered. Even in English, how do you make sure you get the drink you want without mockery or being slapped? Thankfully, geographers and linguists over at Strange Maps have more time on their hands than we do…phew!

3) Finally, I know you’re all as disappointed as I am that the Large Hadron Collider didn’t make the world asplode this week. Now we all have to pay our bills and apologize for saying what we really think to our workmates… Stupid LHC people! Let’s mock them through song… (or technically, just mock them as THEY provide the song. Is rap even song?)

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