Her Majesty’s Reign

Some of April and most of May 2015!

England

First time in the United Kingdom and I’m stoked! Believe it or not (and I wouldn’t), there was even a sign at the airport that read: “Welcome to England: Land of the tyre (tire), pound (£), stone (14 lbs), queen (Liz the II), and many more, init.” I know, I know, I thought so, too! It was all rather informal.

Well, Lizzie and I have temporarily moved (for the next two to three months, that is) to Ickleton, United Kingdom. It is a tiny wee village of 709 inhabitants in the heart of the English countryside. Actually, Ickleton is where Lizzie grew up (ha! Get it?) before moving to Austria. So, until July or so, we will reside in the annexe of her old home, which still belongs to her grandparents who live in Australia. It’s cool, though, because the annexe connects to her old home, which is being rented out by a wickedly fun family! They have had us over a handful of times for drinks, snacks, and a picnic just last weekend!

Since April 26th (happy birthday, Britta!!), we have been busy in both the garden and the annexe; garden work, carpet removing, carpet replacing, and hardcore relaxing will be taking up our time betwixt the all-important spring cleaning. Originally, the plan was for me to take an English as a foreign language course, extract a certificate, and voila, have an overseas career option for temporary purposes. As fate had it, I was not accepted to the hoped-for course starting on the 27th of April. Clearly, I was not expecting this denial, as we bought last minute airfare a mere three days before leaving! The day after booking our flights, they told me my English grammar ain’t good and stuff. Man, it’s still raw.

But, it has been a fantastic ride since then! The English countryside full of lush greens, bright yellows, rabbits, pheasants, and songbirds is absolutely astounding.

From Stansted airport, we made our way to the tiny village of Lizzie's childhood: Ickleton!

From Stansted airport, we made our way to the tiny village of Lizzie’s childhood: Ickleton!

After quickly dropping off our bags at the annexe, we had our taxi take us old family friends' of Lizzie's who lent us two bikes for our first several days in da UK

After quickly dropping off our bags at the annexe, we had our taxi take us to family friends’ of Lizzie’s who lent us two bikes for our first several days in the UK

To think that just two days previous and I was planning on take this bike the 15 miles (2x) into Cambridge for that English course!

To think that just two days previous I was planning on taking this bike the 15 miles (2x) into Cambridge for that English course!

Look at that blue sky! It most definitely rained one hour after this photo was taken

Look at that blue sky! It most definitely rained or clouded over not one hour after this photo was taken

The weather has been nothing short of English with a few delightfully sunny days. I guess it’s really no surprise that thatched roofs still dot the village-scapes here!

The spring cleaning has been going well. The first night was a shocker, though! Because the annexe has been largely unoccupied for a few years, Mother Nature has moved in. A thousand moths inundated our faces when we first entered. Lot of evidence of mouse exploration was also found. In fact, when we folded back the covers of our bed that first night, trying to convince ourselves the moths hadn’t… we were delighted to find that nope! The moths hadn’t ventured so far. Oh wait but a mouse had:

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As had its whole family by the looks of it!

We still think he’s in the house, though. At least I’m convinced. (Turns out I was right. Look what we later found:)

Trapped him in a humane mouse trap!

Trapped him in a humane mouse trap! We interrogated him for intel on his family but he was good

Got mah heavy duty work bandana on

Got mah heavy duty work bandana on

Also, most terrifically Lizzie and I have the use of her grandparents’ car. It’s wonderful and a real life saver! Except that… They. Drive. On. The. Left. Side. Of. The. Road. No matter how many times I tell myself this, it doesn’t make it any easier. I have only made one mistake so far – and a pretty scary one – but that’s it! Still though, it is beyond strange. Oh oh, and the roundabouts go clockwise!! Horrifying. Additionally, we have bought two new used bikes for when I’m too scared to drive. They’re real sleek. We often ride into the nearest big town, Saffron Walden, from where many of you may have received a postcard!

Ganging out in Saffron Walden!

Ganging out in Saffron Walden!

Tuesday and Saturday market. Fresh veg and deliciously cheap cheeses!

Tuesday and Saturday market. Fresh veg, fruits, and deliciously cheap cheeses!

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Another recent event was a visit from Lizzie’s father, Paul, at the first of May. We had a great time with him here, though he was primarily busy with his Catalina flying boat! In fact, Paul graciously invited me along for a quick ride one day. That was really quite phenomenal.

Totally stoked for my ride in the Catalina

Totally stoked for my ride in the Catalina

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Cap'n Paul!

Cap’n Paul!

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Now that we both have a bit more time on our hands, we have also been cooking deliciously good food. Just look at this menu list (by Lizzie) of possible meals from foods solely in our fridge:IMG_0295

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And of course, Lizzie’s carrot cake!

I will close this post by quickly mentioning my two new favorite hobbies: gardening and bird watching.

Paul showing us around not even one twentieth of their massive but gorgeous garden

Paul showing us around not even one twentieth of their massive but gorgeous garden

That is a long tailed tit!

That is a long tailed tit!

Twin great tits!

Twin great tits!

Doin' the mowin'

Doin’ the mowin’

 

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A goldfinch, my favorite bird!

 

I will write again very soon. For now, I wish you great health and happiness!

Jarett out

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About Jarett Bigej

"It is impossible to eat an ice cream cone in a masculine way."
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2 Responses to Her Majesty’s Reign

  1. I like that list of food!! Can you both come to back to Dubai and be my live-in chefs? Thanks!

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  2. lovelymuggle says:

    Just wonderful! Gonna steal some of those food ideas:) ❤ Send me a postcard!!!!! 415 Talladega St. SE Albuquerque, NM 87123 Also if you have time you should read some more Potter! If you send me your address I'll send you which ever book you need next!

    Like

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