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January 27, 2005

I have had enough of the homogenous nature of London and the rest of the country now.

Every little suburb has a McDonalds, an off-licence, an ‘urban’ version of one of the supermarket chains and of course the ubiquitous £1 shop (or 50p shop in the more ‘well to do’ locations).

I remember as a kid going to the Greengrocers and then the supermarket for any packaged goods, going to the sweetshop for sweets, and then the chemists for the latest prescription from the Doctor, who had a surgery in his house!

Gone are those days and we now have a sanitised standard appearance to our local high streets.
However I don’t think it stops there anymore. It’s beginning to pervade our lives as well.
I see us all starting to have the same things going on. The same fears. The same hopes. The same acceptance of life as unchangeable. The same lack of enthusiasm for change.

Fears? Fear of being overrun with ‘immigrants’. The fear that our jobs may go soon as there is no real telling if things will last for our lifetime. The fear of grabbing the attention of ‘that bunch of teenagers on the corner’. The fear of Terrorism. The fear that Tony Blair will stay in power. The Fear that Michael Howard will get into Downing Street.

Hopes? Hope that the next bill is a small one. The hope that one day debt will not be an issue. The hope that you will be able to sleep at night. The hope that the kids will grow into nrmal human beings. The hope that the next day will be a better one.

Acceptance? Traffic Jams. Poor Customer Service. The inevitable delays on trains/tube/buses. Congestion charging. Traffic wardens. Expensive CDs, Theatre tickets, water, phone bills.

And onto Change. What can we change? I can’t preach like Tony Robbins. But all I can say is that amongst all these hopes and fears there is an ounce of the kindness and love that we all as humans share and crave. I think its all about finding that middle path and accepting some things and confronting others. Fearing some things and fighting others. Hoping for some things and despairing for others. Changing some things and leaving the rest of it alone.


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  1. Interesting list you have under "Acceptance"… I think collectively a number of those were the reason I moved away from the big smoke.

  2. Shapps permalink

    Oh but my good man…..some of us made the mistake of taking on responsibilities before upping sticks and moving into the country. And I can‘t believe moving away stopped the bills! 😉

  3. No… just the traffic, pollution, bad trains, congestion charging, the lack of parking that makes traffic wardens a terror, and water bills (part of the council tax here).

    The heating bill is higher, but the food bill is lower 🙂

    Still just as many idiots in the country, and probably more of them are igonorant and small minded than in the city, but it is nice to be greeted by name in the \"high street\" and for there still to be a fierce sense of community.

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