In Paris, you learn wit, in London you learn to crush your social rivals, and in Florence you learn poise.

I’m always very torn when it comes to London.

I know that as a fashion lover, I should be ecstatic at any chance to visit the city, but I’m really not.
The sole reason I go there is the West End.

Yeah I know -Oxford Street, Brick Lane, The Beatles, blah blah blah.

It’s not for me.

In fact a lot of what I’ve seen in London has been a bit scary and dirty looking.
And the taxis are really expensive.
And while I love being able to navigate it, I loathe and detest the Underground…it’s so feckin’ HOT and then COLD and then HOT!
And the general public (natives and tourists) are quite unfriendly and rude.

Maybe it’s different to live there, but as a tourist, it’s a bit cruddy.
(I’m sure loads of people say the same about Dublin)

And also, even though it probably seems a little silly, most people from traditional Irish families have an in-built….well, I wouldn’t say dislike, because it’s not like that….
…well put it this way, hundreds of years of oppression aren’t let go very easily.
I mean The Irish Republic hasn’t been The Irish Republic for even a hundred years yet!

Not that that means I just hate random British people, because that’s just ridiculous.
I mean it’s not like some lovely British blogger my age has any connection what happened or even knows who the Black and Tans were.
It’s sorta ignorant to hold people today responsible for what happened before 1924.

I think it’s the general ‘British thing’ as in the symbolism that we have a problem with.
Like heading to London, I wanted to get into the spirit of things fashion-wise. Sure the Union Jack print scarves are quite fetching, but I’d be feckin’ ex-communicated from the Family is I thought to wear one.
Likewise, when I was in Madame Tussauds, I had a picture taken with one of those funny guards with the fuzzy hats and a quick snap taken with Harry, cos he’s a Ginger and the outcast of the Royals, but I wasn’t going to have a pic taken with the Queen.
Does it make sense?
Probably not.
But it’s an intuitive thing.
It’s in your blood.

For example, I’m sure Jewish people don’t shout vulgarities at the random German/Austrian people they see, but they’re not going to wear a Swastika or name their firstborn Adolf.

I do feel like some of you may get the wrong idea and think I’m some crazy racist.

I’m not….I swear.
I love Coronation Street and Harry Potter and James Bond (although the best Bonds were Scottish and Irish, so maybe that doesn’t count) and British Vogue (which is miles better than its American Cousin).
But I’m not going to cheer the English Team on in the World Cup and it hurt a little to watch the English Rugby Team step foot on Croke Park soil, when 80 years beforehand, English Hooligans parading as Peacekeepers massacred innocent Irish men, women and children during a match in a stadium that only ever hosted Irish sports until a few years ago.

Ok wow, this is heavy stuff, so moving on…

Anyway, Madame Tussauds was the highlight of the trip.
Although bloody hell, you think someone would warn you about the two hour queue on a Sunday morning!
And lads, that feckin’ Scare Section….I nearly wee-ed myself.

I am a screamer.
I never knew that.
And The Boy nearly wet himself laughing at me.
And every actor in there targetted me.
And the old man behind me said he was glad I was in front, because my screams warned him that someone was going to jump out.
I was a mess coming out of there!

Embarrassing much?

So please enjoy my ‘awesome’ pictures and my non-racism….it’s not the people I have problem with, it’s just, well, that I’m Irish.



Filed under Daily Update., Photography

24 responses to “In Paris, you learn wit, in London you learn to crush your social rivals, and in Florence you learn poise.


    Nah I know what you mean. I like the look of the Union Flag. Red, white and blue go really well together but I’d never, ever, ever wear one.

    Glad you had fun in Madame Tussauds! Sometimes the most random part of a trip can be the most fun. When Boyfriend and I were in Brussels it was all about Mini Europe

  2. well I guess you do different things as a tourist which is why you maybe didn’t enjoy it much, like I’ve never even been to Madame Tussaurds and I live in London. But I do other things which are more real London to me. I find the tourist attractions kind of boring – so many queues.

    • Yeah, I know people who have spent a proper amount of time there or lived there for a while and really love it! It could just be that I’m limited in what I’ve seen because I only ever go there for a weekend!

      I’m planning on getting that tour bus next time I go and maybe it’ll give me a better impression of the city!

      • You should go to portobello market and go to hummingbird bakery, or go to Columbia road – that’s my fave place to go! (But it’s only open on a Sunday). It’s beautiful – SO many lovely shops, and a flower market. Or go to the tate modern then walk along the embankment. And Covent garden is a bit touristy but still lovely. have you ever been to any of those places? xx

  3. Oh I love London, and I totally rule the Underground. I’m a little sad that you dislike it so much 😦

    • Lol, but don’t you find the trains so uncomfortable? Like you’re walking around the station and the wind is blowing through you and it’s freezing and then you get on the train and is roasting hot!
      And I wouldn’t say I dislike London….I guess I….nothing it! Like I’m not all “Woooo London”, but I’m not shaking my fist at it and telling it to get off my lawn! I’ve just yet to see the big appeal!

  4. I was in London this weekend too, and what was up with the weather?! It was sunny, then cold, then cloudy, then a little rain, then sunny, then HOT – and that was only Saturday!!! I hate the underground too, everything about it. But I like London as a city to visit (don’t think I want to live there) and everytime I go I do different things. This time I did a lot of food eating in Borough Market and in Spitalfields. I did a lot of drinking in Shoreditch and some walking in Greenwich. I also went to a great exhibition in Sommerset House on Maison Martin Margiela.

    Did you enjoy Jersey Boys???

  5. I totally get what you’re saying about the Irish/English thing. Like, my dad works for an english company, deals with english customers all day, loves going over there for work related weekends and spent 4 years in the 80s living there cos Ireland was unemployment central. We even have a bunch of much loved relatives there.

    But he STILL mutes the TV when God Save the Queen comes on. And I’m sure I’ve just sent shivers up his spine by using caps for the title of their anthem. I wouldn’t have dared show my dad a pic of me and the queen, and anything union jack would be unwelcome Chez Moi.

    But at the same time, I know I’m not racist, and I know my dad isn’t. The comparison with Jews and Germans in a great way to explain it really. 🙂

    Glad you enjoyed Landan!! 🙂 Ooh, have you ever seen wicked?!

  6. Eimear

    o.O get the tour bus next time you’re there. It made me fall in love with London. Plus I got a great tan! And I totally understand where you’re coming from with the Irish/English thing. I have mountains of English friends, 2 of my best friends are English. It’s nothing to do with the people, but it’s hard to let go when it didn’t happen that long ago. I don’t blame the English people now one bit, it wasn’t their fault. But I would also change the channel if God Save the Queen came on. It was a little strange seeing the English teams playing in Croke Park but hey, that’s progress and in a way I’m glad. We should never forget our history, but we shouldn’t hold prejudice with it either. Kudos to you for saying it on the internet though, there’s a lot of people who wouldn’t have the courage to be that honest. I appreciate it.

  7. emilycross

    Totally get what you mean about english/irish thing.

    I was over in London Stansted waiting on connection flight and saw the cutest tote bag (with union jack on it – v. tasteful though) and I’m one of those people who likes to buy souvenirs etc.(and had sterling to get rid of) but yeah, I thought “maybe. . . ” then my tummy flipped and I got the whole ‘shame on you’ feeling I get when elderly people give you the evil eye.

    I’ve english relatives and friends and my dad was born in england (as his parents were working there)- but don’t ask me to cheer the english team or call me british, even if geographically we’re all part of British Isles.

  8. I’ve only been in London when I was on my way to Manchester, but I didn’t exactly love the atmosphere there. It was so cold (yes the weather was as well, it was october). I liked Liverpool (Manchester as well, but not as much) loads better, but that’s just because I’m a huge Beatles fanatic.
    It’s interesting for me to read your thoughts on the whole Irish-British thing (and nooo I don’t think it’s racist). I’ve been to Dublin with my school, and the entire trip was about the Irish history. We also discussed it a lot in class. I can understand how you feel, it’s just not that simple and you can’t just let it go, although it’s nothing personal (not anymore, at least).

  9. “geographically we’re all part of British Isles”

    Garhh. That bugs me so much! Even though it’s true.

    • emilycross

      I know!! I had this discussion before with an American geography student cause I went slightly batty when he called me ‘ British’ . . . but technically/geographically (according to him anyhoo and some websites) it’s correct. . .

      Definitely doesn’t sit right though, and politically it’s seen as not correct so I guess it’s all down to your view.

      Personally, I won’t be wearing my geographical tinted glasses anyhoo – i prefer my rose tinted ones 🙂

    ahhhh britain.
    & madame tussauds looks creepy but fun 🙂

  11. This one time, I coped Agyness Deyn and bought a union jack tshirt in Zara. I thought I was pretty slick in my new tshirt, until my Dad saw and almost had a heart attack. He looked disgusted at the sight of it, and launched into a history of Ireland speech. I no longer wear the tshirt, just to avoid another lecture.

  12. Yeah, I’m all for let bygones be bygones and all but, when it comes to Britain it’s just no can do. I would never personally let that influence my judgement of British people.
    It’s just when it comes to certain politicos, and the fact that the UK still retains a hold over what it is to be Irish.

  13. Obama is looking pleased with your phone-answering skills. What do you think about moving to the US and working at the White House? 🙂

  14. I know what you mean! Because this is how most Egyptians feel about Israelis but that was 40 years ago…

  15. hope you had a fantastic time and Obama didnt work you too hard x

  16. Cat

    I usually enjoy your blog, but I just find some of this post really questionable. I was born and brought up in England and spent the last year in London, although I do have an Irish passport, so I may be as biased as you are. I just really hate this anti-English thing. It wasn’t me, and it wasn’t really many who are still alive in the UK either. Basically it was people in the past who are now gone, and still Irish people have a bias against completely unrelated people because they may have lived in the same place. It’s just not logical.

    Also, the comment about Jews and Germany is a pretty massive leap in reasoning, the Swastika and the name Adolf are not German emblems in any way whatsoever.

    • That’s fair enough…we’re all entitled to opinions!
      I’ve already said I have no problem with English people. You’re looking from a completely different perspective though….having an Irish passport and living in England means you didn’t grow up the way a lot of Irish people did. My greatgran was born in 1901 and only when I was 12 or so, so I grew up with the stories of what happened, as did a lot of people I know! A lot of my family came from rural areas that were worst affected by the fight for freedom and from areas around the border that are still affected by the fighting.
      It’s part of who Irish people are: as I said, it’s in our blood.

      I think (and so did some other people who commented here) that the comparision with Jewish and the German communities were quite accurate. Again, you didn’t grow up in the environment or experience it, so you can’t know how they feel. Hitler led Germany and the Swastika was everywhere, so of course they’re associated with Germany. Many Germans at the time supported what happened.

      It’s lovely to sit back from a neutral point and say it’s all silly, because you have an Irish passport and probably Irish parents, so you get it. You don’t get it. You grew up in England. Sara (below) who is from Egypt said she understands the situation because it’s how Egyptians feel about Israelis. Ireland still isn’t free from British rule, so it’s still an issue that irks most Irish people.

      It’s a patriotic thing!

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