My father was born in Kenya and served in the British army as a New Zealand citizen. My mother was Dutch. Branches of my family are German, Scottish, Maltese, Haitian, i don't fucking know. I grew up in Gibralter and Scotland and Germany and Denmark and Holland and New Zealand. I was born in England but i am not a little Englander.
Everything about Brexit is the antithesis of the Star Trek utopia i grew up hoping to experience in my lifetime. When i was a kid there were passport checks between my home and my grandparents' homes. The 1985 Schengen Agreement changed that. We cried when the wall came down. I spent my teenage years proud that two of my grandparents lived in the city where the Treaty on European Union was signed in 1992. My mum was planning to move back there before she passed away.
This is not how the world was supposed to turn out.
It makes me physically sick that 34% of adult Brits still want to vote for a corrupt, racist scumbag who cheerfully exploits xenophobia to pump up his bloated ego. It's utterly disgusting.
I escaped to the other side of the world in part to avoid feeling like half the people around me were spiteful, selfish nationalists. It's been largely successful. It's easy to feel insulated in a city of 20 million people where only a tiny handful speak your language. The authoritarian government that squashes any overly political media helps too.
Of course i still read the western media.
And i watch shows.
I spoke briefly in a previous post about Don't Forget the Driver, which is a drama about an old bus driver in a sad holiday town who accidentally picks up an Eritrean migrant over the Channel. It is an excellent show. I'd highly recommend it to foreigners, or Brits like me who left too long ago to understand there are still parts of the country that haven't changed much since the 70s. I feel a bit like the migrant character, an alien in my early childhood memories.
This morning i watched Years and Years. The concept is to follow the life of a British family over the next 15 years. The first episode takes us from 2019 to 2024, and imagines the post-Brexit shit-show that we still have to look forward to. I'm not sure exactly where it's going to go, but i like sci-fi, and the last few years have pretty much destroyed any faith i had in humanity building a shared utopia, so i am well here for a show that documents societal collapse. It's sort of cathartic. I hope everyone dies in the end.
Tomorrow i start my new job for a Chinese-owned, British tech company. Can't really escape, can i?