And although I can't afford research trips before writing my books (trust me, if I could I would be on a plane to England tomorrow!) I have in fact spent a summer in England. In 1990, when I was twenty years old, I went on an international mission trip to England with my Christian university. That might seem like an odd place for a mission trip, but Christianity has been on the decline in England for some time. And it was a great trip. We worked with an organization that did a lot of church planting and street ministry. I learned so much about how to evangelize and had many weeks to completely immerse myself in British culture. We worked with Brits all day, reached out to Brits, and slept in British homes most nights.
|Taking the ferry to the Isle of White.|
During my summer there we traveled around the country, spending time in London, Cambridge, Southampton, and the Isle of White. Although I did not have the opportunity to go very far north, I met people from all over England. One of my favorites was a guy named Ashley from Yorkshire. He had the most delectable accent, and we couldn't get enough of trying to copy it.
|My team at the London Hard Rock Cafe|
Although touring was not high on our priority list, we did get to walk throughout all those cities. We saw lots of old buildings, especially from the outside, and all the major sites like Buckingham Palace, Big Ben, Piccadilly Circus, and London Bridge. We also visited a medieval church, which was definitely one of my highlights. Sadly, I don't have a picture of it, but I also loved these little canal boats the we road on.
As I searched through my old pictures, I found a surprising number featuring cute British guys. What can I say? I have a soft spot for both Brits and missionaries. This one also shows my favorite outfit that I purchased at a boutique in London. While most of my teammates were shopping at Laura Ashley (anyone remember those awful flowered, puffy dresses?) I found this very mod little number that I wore regularly for at least a decade. If you can tear your eyes away from the gentlemen in the background, you can see the outfit below in black and yellow.
So that's me and merry olde England. Have you ever been to England? What's the most interesting place you've ever visited?