– by Sara Hain
We, the British, have a long history of influence around the world and our recent exit from Europe has had some detrimental effects – I mean, after two painful months, I’m only just beginning to enjoy my tea biscuits again and I’m wondering what would become of Harry and Meghan who not only left their royal posts but the country itself. That for now is a whole other matter! Nonetheless, how is it possible, I ask myself, that a tiny nation had 23% of the world’s land at one point under her command? Just imagine this – the British Empire was so vast that the sun was always shining.
Accordingly, you do know that we are more than just afternoon tea and snobbery, or perhaps I am just talking about myself. Oops.
I am so proud to be British – I really am. We, as a nation, have offered so much to our world in significant ways. Gosh, if only I can share it all with you but why don’t I give you a snippet.
Did you know that we developed the first vaccine against a contagious disease, smallpox, and as a result, it was eradicated globally? It was 225 years ago that Edward Jenner created the smallpox vaccine, and it was 40 years ago that the World Health Organisation declared smallpox an eradicated disease. It is very much so commendable that one individual can devote his efforts and life to medicine and without most of us even knowing it, we can live without this one fatal disease.
What would most of us know about love if it wasn’t for Romeo and Juliet? William Shakespeare was simply ahead of his time writing about humanity and diversity, and the way we communicate today is due in part to him. Without even knowing it, you probably utter phrases which were written by this literary genius himself. His sensitivity towards how human emotions evolve with trauma and how we all have some hidden compassion within us is no mere undertaking; it is an accomplishment that over 450 years ago, one young writer could pen so many profound thoughts. You must read!
How we identify colours is bestowed to another British fellow, Isaac Newton. Our current understanding of colour comes from the series of experiments he conducted. Before and during his time, colour was believed to be a product of mixing light and dark light, but after he understood the rainbow by refracting white light with a prism, he was able to compose colours as we know them in a rainbow. Red and yellow and pink and green, purple and orange and blue – yes, I can sing a rainbow too!
Finally, the lady herself, my Queen, Elizabeth. Take it how you want, I admire her – she has grace, elegance and strength. She took the throne in her twenties and has reigned for almost 70 years. She has seen through the many Prime Ministers that the country has voted in and made instrumental decisions for her country, and she stood by them even at intervals of difficulty. At a time, when women were seen as secondary, she showed might and fight against the men who contended with her. She has a voice which is so commanding that one is left in awe. Millions flock to see her who in doing so, bring wealth to the economy. She gave up her life for us, to perform her service to her country through thick and thin; this takes valour. Her power comes from her being ever so reticent – this is the authority.
So, when in doubt, if you ever think that a tiny nation does not have what it takes to be mighty, remind yourself of what we have and what we have given you. When we left the European Union, we knew it would not be easy, after all, it took some years to leave, and well, we are still bickering over some finer bits. The way I see it, no-one is truly independent, no matter what nation we belong to, we will be ruled and influenced by external forces.
All in all, imports from and to the U.K. have greatly been impacted by cumbersome paperwork at the border. Most U.K. businesses have simply put a hold on online deliveries to the E.U. due to the extortionate custom fees. I’m happy to pay 5 extra centimes for vanilla yogurt, the consequence of Brexit and I’m happy to buy French eggs rather than British, but I have no choice. This is the world I live in, and if this is what is needed to evolve, then so be it.