Quaint Sordid

We’ve had internet problems (our internet provider won’t accept payment with an American credit card), so I composed a few blog entries offline and am only just now uploading them, so that you, dear readers, can keep up with our family adventures in Britain.

Thursday evening, when the weather was lovely, we went for a family bike-ride along the canal-path by the River Cam. We stumbled on a major rowing competition and stopped to watch the university rowers in their oh-so-scenic boats, manfully straining to hold back their tears at not winning.
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Swans glided by, the sun was just beginning to set in its slow hours-long leisurely British-summer way, and Sophie was especially intrigued by the horses in the field next to the river. It was all incredibly picturesque. I admit, there was a drug-dealer occupying the best horse-viewing point, but even he was quite polite, kindly telling Sophie that she would see more horses if she kept moving on along the river towards the next horse-field.

On the way home, we stopped to eat curry at a riverside pub built almost 500 years ago. Then, cycling home, in rapid succession we saw a man whose face was bleeding from what looked like knife wounds, a man with his pants around his legs, and a very large, very pale woman, lying nearly-naked two feet from the crowded canal-path, struggling to extract herself from her too-tight lacy black lingerie. We just kept biking, along with all the other families out to enjoy the British summer evening.

Our experience of Britain keeps swinging oddly from the picturesque to the tawdry. Our British friends explain that it’s a small country, so everything is close together.

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