Just came back from an international daytrip to a curious, but delightful, little island-country situated in the sea between the mainland of the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland. It is a country with a population of no more than 80,000 inhabitants (which is less than a third of the population of my home London Borough of Brent) – and is affiliated to the UK in terms of language, currency and Royalty Family – but nevertheless an independently governed state .
It has a curiously interesting national emblem which comprises three “legs” arranged in a circularly-rotated fashion – and proudly displays this in a monument for arriving visitors just outside the terminal building of its international airport:
The taxi-driver who shuttled me and my colleagues between the airport and our place of business there today was a well-spoken, highly-intellectual, ex-programmer associated with French air-traffic-control systems, who happened to spend some temporary time there a few years ago – but liked it so much he decided to make it his home – and presumably gave up his sophisticated career in IT to be a taxi-driver there.
And I can truly understand why – it is truly beautiful and peaceful place – and the people are so friendly and trusting. It is a world apart from Route 79 territory – where it is not uncommon for (as happened last night when I was travelling home from work) some tired and dishevelled-looking guy decides to go to the toilet – i.e. (“go for a piss”) – in full public view – gushing his bodily-fluids (and splashing it about everywhere) against the front door of a closed-for-the-day pharmacy on Wembley High Road whilst waiting for the bus to arrive. A world apart indeed.
This curious little island-state is the “Isle of Man” – and given an opportunity, will really look forward to escaping from the harsh realities of London life and visiting there again at some point in the future.
I really like the Isle of Man.