Things I will miss about the UK

1. The friends we have made here.

2. Boss and Cherub, whom I do not know when, if ever, I will see again. With my nieces and nephews, I knew I would remain a part of their lives. I may not stay a part of Boss’ and Cherub’s and that causes a slight, worrisome ache. And oh, as I write this, a tear. I am a sap.

3. Flowers. It’s not that other places or Australia don’t have lovely flowers, but I noticed flowers more over here. I’m tempted to list individual flowers but that would make this list burdensomely long. I will particularly miss snowdrops and bluebells, which I very much doubt I will see in Aus or elsewhere.

Lots of groovy flowers.

4. Seasons. Seasons is why I noticed flowers more. I love the changing of the seasons.

5. Birds, especially tits and robins. As I type this a coal tit is calling someone from the tree outside my office window. Whoever he’s looking for, she’s not answering. My office robin returned yesterday: I came back from getting my morning coffee and found him flying around my office. I duck and wove to get to the window (which had been open a crack) and threw it wide open and then stepped into the corner, making myself as still and thin as possible so that he would fly out again. He also left a little goodbye present for me on one of my files.

Bullfinch, Fort William, Scotland, August 2010.

6. Really, really cold weather. I truly will miss this. I love winter – proper winter. I loved icy mornings and frost covering everything and the ever-present hope of snow. And oh, how I love snow. Someone remind me of this when I am complaining about not feeling my fingers, toes or nose during our cycle ride.

A snow covered oak in The Common, Southampton, UK, February 2009.

7. Long summer evenings.

8. Decent public transport and the ease of a car-free life here. I suspect Aus will not be an easy car free life and that we may not remain car free for very long. We’ll see.

9. Rainbows. Maybe because of all of the rain but I have never seen as many totally awesome, end-to-end rainbows as in the UK. And quite a few double rainbows as well.

10. Old houses and buildings of the many periods of architecture I enjoy: Georgian, Tudor half-timbered houses, cute thatched cottages. Also, all the many lovely village churches.

Southease Church, Kent, UK, January 2009. Near here is the part of the River Ouse in which Virginia Woolf drowned herself.

11. Chips! As in, for the Aussies, hot chips.

12. Green, green grass that is soft and not filled with biting ants, prickles and bindis (a horrid tiny plant in Aus that pierces the bottom of your bare feet and hooks through your skin; much of my childhood was spent painstakingly picking bindis out from my heel).

There’s probably more, but that’s what I can come up with at present.



  1. A lovely post and photos, and I think that it’s a wonderful list!
    Some of the things, such as flowers, birds and the weather, you’ll at least be able to keep in touch with via blog friends posts. xx


  2. Your photos are enchanting, Oanh. You’ve captured that fragile soft light that we don’t often see in So Cal since the sun is that much harsher. That Bullfinch shot is phenomenal. And I loved reading your list. I bet you could do a self-published book of your UK flower photos. With a part two when you get back to Brisbane 😉


    1. Thank you, nikkipolani!
      Oh, the light. I’d forgotten about the soft light here! Yes, I’m pretty pleased with the bullfinch; he was so obliging (and only about a metre away). A photo-book is one of my “on the back shelf” projects – you’re a mindreader!


  3. That bullfinch photo is awesome. I can see each feather. Such detail.

    I, too, miss the changing of the seasons and snow. The smell of autumn with its crispy leaves. And I remember your lovely bluebell wood photo. I’ve never seen the like here at all.

    Will Melbourne be very different from Brisbane? I don’t know my Australian cities at all to know the difference.


  4. WC
    Thank you re the bullfinch – it was a ‘being in the right place at the right time’ shot!

    Melbourne is quite different from Brisbane; it’s much further south so it does get reasonably cold in winter and is more seasonal than Brisbane, but its seasons are not a patch on the UK’s because the weather is still quite mild (in comparison).


  5. Good luck with your cycling, Oanh. There’s still things I miss about the UK too, but there’s nice things to come back to as well. And hey, if you’re ever down in Melbourne, look me up.

    LE xxx


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