Posted by: TheAuthor | 15/01/2011

The English Touch

For a long time I have been in a state of despair over the way England has been run. A leaky and unjust benefits system. Richer get richer and everyone else pays for it. Lofty taxes on fuel and for the council. Talks of taxing people on the distance they drive. To name but a few of an extremely long and bitter list. All these negative aspects, created by the governing body, drawing attention away from whats great about the nation. The lake and peak district; traditional English culture; fish and chips; ice cream by the sea; sunday roasts; and many more. Since I have been in the USA and Canada I have come to realise, also, how far behind the times and conglomerate these two comparatively young nations are.

I want to buy a random gift, maybe a helium blimp or a ‘create your own’ Monopoly game. So far, to get hold of this in North America I have been unable to find a website online that can cater and deliver. I am sure it is possible, no question, but when compared to England, we have a large array of websites offering everything and anything you could want immediately. Delivered to your door within days, not weeks if at all. Websites easy to find to boot.

I want to buy a car. Canada is the same as England, initially, you choose the car you want and get a quote for insurance. This is the first tricky part, comparison websites aren’t very useful if you’re a legal alien so you need to go into an insurance broker. They can then search for you. At home, a simple search online to find the one you want and you can be covered for 1 day, a week or from next month for the next year. Easy. Can I drive the car yet? I own it and have insurance, eventually. No, is the response, you don’t have a licence plate. Now, you need to go to the registry office and register the car to you and providing proof of insurance. Then you will be presented with your very own licence plate, for you only. Now to walk home and put it on the car. What a faff.

I want to transfer money between banks. Well, you will be charged for the privilege in North America. Handling fee’s, for your own money to a separate bank. England’s banking system is superb, direct deposits, free inter bank transfers, chip and pin, fee unlimited withdrawals as standard and not as a paid for extra, free withdrawals form any other major bank. The list goes on and on.

I want to buy alcohol. Well, you can’t go to a supermarket; a petrol station; little shop next door; and news agents like you can at home. You need the liquor store.

Frustrations run easily when you aren’t able to have the freedom you enjoy back home. The system is catching up, ever so slowly, to Europe and one hopes it will continue.

That said, I’m going to go hiking in the rocky mountains now, beat that lake district.


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