England: Day 3—an accident waiting to happen

Day 3 began with a delicious English breakfast delivered to our room. I quickly looked around for a tip to give the server, and intuitively grabbed the largest coin sitting on the counter, which logically would be worth the most money. I was aiming for 2 £. After he left the room I sifted through the coins and soon realized to my embarrassment that I had just handed him an ever generous 10 pense (which is less than 15 cents.) Hopefully I'll get a chance to make up for it tomorrow. Unless I am risking having the server spit in my food before he arrives at our door in the morning.

I don't have many photos to share as we have been printing most of the day. But the most exciting adventure to report has been hiring a car. (They don't rent here, they hire.) We had a lovely interview with the car (har har) and finally hired one with an automatic transmission and air conditioning. Driving a manual while learning to drive on the wrong (I mean left) side of the road and the right (I mean wrong) side of the car seemed an insurmountable challenge.

We are told it is a straight shot from the hotel to the press, but there are about 100 round-abouts between here and there, and it didn't seem straight to me. And then you go clockwise around them, counter-intuitively, and have to figure out which road takes you again in the right direction again. Good luck.

Lesson learned: your intuition will not get you far in England.

To top it off, Amanda (Ian's wife) kept texting to tell us how much she regretted not being with us in Leicester and how terrible it was that she had to spend her time in Hastings on the beach instead. She sent this photo to make us all sympathetic to her plight and we all felt very sorry for her of course.

We finished the day with some traditional Indian curry, and it was an excellent meal. I didn't know this before, but there are many immigrants from India because it was once part of the British empire. When power was handed back to India, it was with an agreement that Indian people could claim citizenship in Britain. As such, there are now about 1.6 million Indian people here and it remains the largest ethnic group in the U.K. today.