Like many Malaysians, I have a curious psychological relationship with the UK, and specifically, England.

In part this may be because of the trailing influence of being in the British Commonwealth (before the UK decided to hook up with the EU and ghost the Commonwealth). So I grew up with English literature equally with our own. The Enid Blytons and the nursery rhymes, the Brontë and Austen and Dickens. The Malaysian boomer generation especially, almost seem to consider London as a pilgrimage destination!

For my own part, I have always preferred the parts of the UK which are outside of its cities. I did my Masters’ degree in Bangor, Wales. I eventually married a Geordie man (the marriage did not last).

And all my life I have enjoyed a most curious phenomenon: English people, especially in diaspora, seem to ‘adopt’ me and treat me almost like their own. (If you know anything about the British islanders, you will understand how unnatural this is).

Consequently, similar to my own country Malaysia, the bulk of my experience of the UK was in my pre-blogging years. It is embedded in a more instinctive knowledge, and I cannot now retrieve as distinct stories. Perhaps if I return to the UK in future, I would come with the ability to tell new stories about an old place.