You Know You’re Back home When…

November 22, 2017 12:37pm Published by Jules Smith in Whimsy On A Wednesday 24 Comments

English Country Home

*This is a typical, pretty, English village house. It’s not mine. Yet.*

Satirical Snapshots Bringing You Whimsy On A Wednesday!

On my flight back to the UK I sat next to a Swedish man who had been in DC discovering a secret vaccine. It was kind of like the start of a Criminal Minds episode.

I’m always mindful not to be too smiley to my next-door plane passenger because the last thing I want is someone chatting to me for seven plus hours. I always make a point of throwing my NR headphones on the seat whilst I store my bag in the overhead locker. Visuals make a point. But not in this case. Thankfully, he was a very sweet and interesting man but the Camp As Christmas cabin boy couldn’t understand his broken English and I had to act as interpreter when it came to dinner choices and drinks.

Taking The Biscuit

I would like you to know that trying to explain ‘Millionairre Shortbread’ to someone who doesn’t understand a deal of English is incredibly difficult. It’s much harder than charades or Pictionary.

“What is…?” Swedish man picks up the British Airways tiny pot of millionaire shortbread. We’d already been through the salad, how balsamic vinegar works and why the chicken curry looked like the contents of a baby’s nappy.

“It’s millionaire shortbread.”


“No. Pudding.”

“What are pudding?”


“ I eat now?”

“No, after dinner. You know, like a sweet. It IS sweet.”

He was still somewhat confused so I opened mine up to reveal chocolate.

“Just chocolate?”

“Kind of but not. At the bottom is shortbread.

“This is bread?”

“No it’s a luxury biscuit.” I spooned out the chocolate in mine to show him.

“Why is millionaire?”

“I don’t know. The marketing department of this product want you to feel important when you eat it. And it’s very rich.”


“Excessively sweet and overpowering.”

“Like millionaire!”

“Not in my experience. The one’s I’ve met tend to be arrogant arseholes.”

After all that he only bloody fell to sleep and didn’t eat his millionaire shortbread and there was mine all ruined and splattered about my dinner tray. I’m really getting sick of Karma.

Back On The Road

Thankfully, having got used to the proper cold temperatures of Virginia the London weather didn’t come as a shock to me. In fact, it was milder. There’s a lovely scent to the English air that I am unable to describe but it smells like home.

I got picked up from the airport and hit the  full of traffic motorway and remembered what a joy that was. I’ve witnessed some horrific driving in America and can’t believe how some people have passed their driving test. Our lane rules are a lot stricter and people tend to follow them but you still get the occasional numpty. Some even have a number plate to prove the fact incase you missed it.

UK Van

And then there’s the comedians.

Wobble number plate

In and out of the car.

Pie shop, UK

Ah yes, it all started flooding back to me in a ‘I’m back home but slightly tinged with fear’ kind of way.

Home Is Where The Heart Is

Whoever came up with that saying was sprinkled with fairy dust and half cut on a bottle of Tequila. Whilst I love seeing my famalam and friends, walking back into the house always annoys me.

Someone has completely used my English Rose Yankee Candle. Kill them.

The Wheelie bins are full.

The next door garden centre has decided it is Christmas and sprayed everything white outside. Hate them.

I have more mail than Santa gets at Christmas and I know that most of it is hateful.

My dog ignores me for abandoning him. Nice.

The microwave has exploded and completely destroyed the circuit board. The blown up microwave, for some reason, is at the bottom of the stairs.

Outside there are more empty bottles than an alcoholic can get through on a weekend bender.

Is there milk in the fridge for a much needed cuppa? No.

Let’s Play Hide And Seek

Turns out I’m as stupid as they come. Before I go away on my adventures I hide some of my cards. Things like the card for my current bank account that takes care of all the bills and so on back in the UK. Taking that to America is not a good idea so I leave it behind and take others used for special “Jules’ occasions. I hide this in a special place where nobody will find it along with store cards, driving licence, gym membership, Costa coffee points, car relay membership, car keys and so on.

One of the first things I do when back home is sort out my finances. Firstly I double over in anguish at how much money I’ve haemorrhaged in the States, berate myself, have a cup of tea and get over it. Then I swap out my dollars in my purse for tenners and then I retrieve my hidden cards so I can function in the UK.

Couldn’t bloody find them.

I turned the house upside down looking in all the secret places that I am likely to / or have hidden things before. Nope. Nada.

Then I remembered I have a special fireproof box where I hide very important things. Maybe I put them there. However, I forgot where I hid the keys that open the tin box where the keys for the firebox are kept. Took me three hours to find them. It took three hours because on my hunt for the keys that open the box for the other keys, I found loads of other things that I’d forgotten about and got distracted. When I eventually found them and opened the firebox, my cards weren’t in there.

Most confused. Onset of panic. Start to think of culprits.

Maybe I’ve been burgled? Surely not. My savage “bred to kill” terrier would have had them by the throat.

Jack Russell Terrier

I’m six days into this fiasco and still haven’t found where I’ve hidden them. I know it’s somewhere very clever but it’s far too clever for the likes of me.

Brussels Are For Life Not Just For Christmas

Nobody’s getting any Christmas presents until I find my cards ~ just sayin’.

However, on the subject of Peace on Earth I will leave you with the following picture. I’ve been wanting to take a photo of this for a couple of years as it makes me laugh and I remembered to do so on my way back from Heathrow.

It’s a slogan sprayed on a bridge by a genius graffiti artist, around junction 16 of the M1.

Give Peas A Chance Graffiti slogan, M1

That’s right, my friends. It’s not just about sprouts. Give Peas A Chance. Keep ‘em mushy.



Leave a reply

So a typical home coming Jules!
I feel your pain.
With regards to the Live and Let Pie, pie emporium, every time I pass it, I can’t help but wonder… Did the meat come from the barbers next door? A la Sweeny Todd. I know, it’s not normal but its how my mind works.
Glad you are home, when you find those cards, abd now my social diary is free (ha) we will get together. And while you are doing your major search, just remember, you have The Bag!!!

Oh yeah, you know it all too well, Theresa.

Haha! I like your not normal mind. Much more interesting.

Oh bloody hell, I have to find THE BAG! This is much more important than the cards because this is history. 🙂

‘Camp as Christmas’, wot-r-u-like! A WO88LE has got the Unit next to us, his name is Gary (obviously).

Rick, I am like the Jules you’ve known and loved for years! Ha!

Seriously?! How about that for fortuitous! Right, I’m coming to your work place because I feel an interview with Gaz and his wobble needs to be realised. Prime him. 😉

He’s not there much yet, I think they are just setting up, but you should know there are several donkeys around with no hind legs because Gaz can talk for bloody England!

Oh no… Oh well, bet I can talk more! Let me know when they’re settled in and I’ll be over! Heh! 🙂

The attack dog may have discovered where you kept the cards – and he may have eaten them. When you call for new ones, simply explain that the old cards are not lost but that the dog ate them. It works when kids go to school and explain that’s what happened to their homework. It’s certain to work equally well for you.

But you’re back in the green and gentle land where ice is NOT added to tea (which still mystifies me) and milk IS added to tea (which still mystifies me) and the tea is not pre-sweetened (why the heck not?). Where ‘bloody’ is more of a metaphor for life and doesn’t have the least thing to do with blood. Where the unicorns wear hijab, and all that. Two cultures separated by a common language, right?

Good call, Larry! Blame the vicious attack dog! I’m sure to get away with that!

Look, TEA ALWAYS GOES WITH MILK! You can have sugar if you’re a builder or contractor. Learn from the experts! Bloody hell…;)

Separated indeed but worry not, I shall take you back to old school vernacular before you know it! 🙂

Welcome home, Jules.
The country has gone to rack and ruin in your absence.
Please sort it out.

I pass under that bridge (it’s on the M25 btw) on an all-too-regular basis. It’s not funny anymore.
Nothing about the M25 is funny.
The bridge even has it’s own Faceache page:

Why thank you, Masher.

You’re bloody right it has. Don’t worry, I’m forming a militia of scary clowns to sort it all out. Have a nice lie down and a cup of tea whilst I save Great Britain.

For some reason, I always thought it was just as I came off the M25 onto the M1 – this is why I miss the photo opp every time! I can’t believe they have a FB page. I just read some of the comments and realised it’s a bit like an anorak club and promptly left! 🙂

Welcome home, Jules. I’ve really enjoyed your adventures. Please can I have your vicious dog? He’s adorable. I’m trying to work out why the blown up microwave would be left at the bottom of the stairs. Have you checked inside for your cards and keys?

Thank you, Jane 🙂

You’re trying to work it out? Well, let me introduce you to a concept called “fuckwittery.” Please, if you can get to the bottom of such idiocy, please fill in the blanks for me 🙂
I’ve tipped it because I am a practical and sensible being. I should have checked inside for nuked cards – you never know what can go on in Wonderland here!

the papers came through last night. I am adopted. I am officially Noops’s son. when do I move in? *)

Please can I have your pedigree name first? See Noops is a backwards spoon so what will his son’s name be, I wonder?

And whenever you want, my sweet. *)

Nice new house. And welcome back to Blighty.

Sounds like your commune needs whipping into shape. Good luck!

Nice, innit. I drive past it everyday and imagine myself like a country milk maid in the garden picking flowers. LOL.

It needs burning to the ground. Fortunately, my evil streak has made a bid for freedom and is starting to work like a charm. Get me a crown! 🙂


I hope its VERY sparkly!

Find your cards yet? If not, I have an infallible method guaranteed to result in you recovering the cards.
1. Cancel your current cards. All of them. Order new ones.
2. You now-cancelled cards will be in the next place you look.

Mike – I thought the very same thing. As soon as I declare them lost is the minute I’ll find them. However, good fortune smiled on me the other day and I opened a drawer and found them. I swear I had already opened this drawer several times but perhaps not to its full extent. Never do anything by half measures is the moral of this story, along with “Remember your hiding places!” 🙂

It’s Pies on the way up the north west motorway bridges

Seriously?! Ha! Is this a British trend or something. Pies and peas – the Great Empire staple! 🙂

I could live in that house happily ever after. Why was I born here into this broke-assed family? Why didn’t I take up a lucrative trade? All this from one photo.

I’ve never heard of millionaire shortbread and I speak English pretty okay, I think.

This post makes me wish I was visiting England for Christmas. #wistful. #longing.

I know, it’s lovely.

But M, you live in COOL place. NYC on your doorstep and all that has to offer and a country with such a vast range of delights to behold you could never get bored!

It’s very easy to take what we have for granted.

However, I understand your point – England has an old worlde, quirky beauty and history that is unique to itself. I’m lucky to be born here, I know. 🙂

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