Pictures Of English Oddities

First of all, I guess I should explain that the items pictured here may only be "oddities" to me. They're actually things I find fascinating more than odd I suppose.  I'm quite sure the English wouldn't find them very odd at all.

I have lived in Texas all my life and the photos I'm sharing with you were taken by me on one of two trips I made to England in 2006.

I have shared these photos with family and friends as I recalled the fun I had while in England. These are things you won't typically find around Texas. I'm not sure if you'd expect to see them where you're from, but either way, I hope you enjoy them as much as I did.

They still bring a smile to my face.

Traffic Control in Work Zones

I was really fascinated by this concept. We don't have anything like it in Texas. Notice the un-manned light system that lets each side know when it's their turn to go through this construction area. It's brilliant! We spend thousands of tax dollars placing real men out there in orange vests carrying tattered orange flags to wave you through the area. I'm sure Pam Roberson would prefer the manned cone method. You'll have to read her hub "Seduction in a Construction Zone" to appreciate that comment.

A very handy way to control traffic in work zones
A very handy way to control traffic in work zones

Innocent Drinks Advertising Van

I thought this was an unusual way to advertise your product. This van was parked in the parking lot of a Tesco supermarket. I guess he has to use his side mirrors to see what's behind him.

Unusual Advertising-very eye-catching
Unusual Advertising-very eye-catching

Faggots on the Menu

Faggots are a traditional English dish similar to meatballs so I'm told. It's customary to eat them with peas (mushy peas). Which, by the way, we call English peas here. We tend to use the word "faggot" in America in a more derrogatory manner. Please don't send me hate mail. It's just comical to see it in an advertisement, that's all.

A menu selection in England that you would NOT find in the States!
A menu selection in England that you would NOT find in the States!

Feeding the Swan in the Lake District

I don't believe I've ever seen a swan in Texas. I'm sure there are some somewhere, but we don't normally find them on the shores of our lakes willing to eat bread from your hand. That's my daughter feeding them. Check out how big he is! I have no idea what the big sign behind her says anymore, probably something about "Don't Feed the Swan". Just kidding.

Handfeeding the Swan
Handfeeding the Swan

Military Tanks in Training on the Roundabout

I was surprised to see a military tank in front of us on the roundabout. My husband pointed out that it's not just any tank, it's displaying an "L" on the back to indicate it's a "Learner" driving it! They were teaching this guy to drive one! You definitely don't see that around here.

Military Tanks with Learner Permits!
Military Tanks with Learner Permits!

Squeezing in to Tight Spots

I just love all the small vehicles in England. (pronounced in Texas as ve-HICK-uls) In Texas, we seem to think bigger is better and everything has plenty of room.

Check out this delivery van that seems to just fit between the two buildings. It's the skinniest van I've ever seen. It looks like it has been in a vice.

Squeeze it in!
Squeeze it in!

HSBC Branch Locations

In Texas, I'm used to seeing large multi-story glass and chrome bank branches. This tiny HSBC branch location (I believe this one is in Padstow in Cornwall) seems like a fixture centuries old. Notice the ATM machine on the wall? It's just so cute and quaint.

An HSBC branch office that doesn't quite look like our branch offices in the States.
An HSBC branch office that doesn't quite look like our branch offices in the States.

Padstow Harbour very near this HSBC

Incredibly Narrow Roads

This roadway is so narrow. Notice how close the stripes are painted next to the buildings. That's how close they drive to the buildings. You cannot step out of one of these businesses without the fear of being run over. Notice someone has parked their electronic wheelchair on the side.

Narrow roads!
Narrow roads!

Conclusion

I hope you enjoyed these as much as I did taking them. If you ever get a chance, you really should visit England. It's more affordable than you think. In March 2006, I was able to fly roundtrip non-stop from DFW to London Gatwick Airport for less than $400.

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Comments 59 comments

Laughing Mom profile image

Laughing Mom 7 years ago

I saw the title and braced myself for God only knew what.

These are more than oddities and most definitely more than interesting!

I took the boy for another snow cone today, and managed to keep it in the cup this time. I knew you'd be proud.


KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

Thanks LM! No spewing today, eh?


Laughing Mom profile image

Laughing Mom 7 years ago

No, but then I didn't have any comments about my third eye, hooked nose and warted chin to make me laugh, either.

I really did enjoy this hub.


Christoph Reilly profile image

Christoph Reilly 7 years ago from St. Louis

I loved all the "Odd" things I saw in Europe. Everyone really should try to visit other cultures. You can learn so much about your own. Very much fun!


KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

Thanks LM, you forgot that the warts on your chin were hairy. Warts just aren't very scary unless they have that one thick hair portruding out of it.

Thanks Christoph! Did you ever get that song you were looking for? I hated to call them oddities, because they're quite normal to the English, I'm sure. But, for me, they were odd. Glad you enjoyed some odd things in your travels to Europe as well. I highly recommend European travel!


Laughing Mom profile image

Laughing Mom 7 years ago

I was trying to forget, but you just keep bringing it up.....

You're too much fun, KCC!


KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

LOL.....fun is what makes the world go around.....well...that and the whole gravational pull, moon, sun and galaxy stuff.


Laughing Mom profile image

Laughing Mom 7 years ago

Here have a snow cone.


Gypsy Willow profile image

Gypsy Willow 7 years ago from Lake Tahoe Nevada USA , Wales UK and Taupo New Zealand

Well they looked perfectly normal to me! (check my profile)

Funny hub.


KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

Makes sense to me, Gypsy! I left a comment on one of your Wales hubs. I love the picture of Tintern Abbey. It's beautiful. I love it there. Thanks for stopping by, I knew my UK friends wouldn't find anything odd about the photos. LOL


Elena. profile image

Elena. 7 years ago from Madrid

Gotta love Europe and our curious European ways, KCC! :-) I once saw an army truck full of soldiers with a L sing on the back, and upon closer inspection, I realized the guy riding shotgun was testing the driver :-) I guess they do the tests under real life circumstances! Laugh!


Feline Prophet profile image

Feline Prophet 7 years ago from India

You do have an eye for the odd! :) And faggots and mushy peas? Sounds really quite unappetising...shudder.


KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

I know, Elena! Roundabouts are scary enough for me without having a tank driver learning to drive on one too!

Faggots remind me of maggots and that is certainly not appetizing sounding!

Thanks Elena and Feline Prophet for stopping by!


ethel smith profile image

ethel smith 7 years ago from Kingston-Upon-Hull

Good old England. I see most of this on a daily basis and being as odd as my country do not bat an eyelid. When you look at it all on here though it does look barmy. My hubby loves faggots, but I am glad to say the eating kind :)


Kerry Lynn profile image

Kerry Lynn 7 years ago

Hi,

I loved looking at your pics, living in England I don't really see these as oddities. Although, now you come to mention it I see what you mean about faggots. I hope you tried some - they are delicious!

Kerry


Teresa McGurk profile image

Teresa McGurk 7 years ago from The Other Bangor

You reminded me of how strange I thought Japan was when I first went there. . . thanks for this look through another's eyes. Perspective, perspective, perspective! Love it!


Candie V profile image

Candie V 7 years ago from Whereever there's wolves!! And Bikers!! Cummon Flash, We need an adventure!

This is great! We have a few swans here, mostly geese, of all species. You NEVER want to hand-feed geese..mean mean mean birds. They'd just as soon attack as fly!


Moon Daisy profile image

Moon Daisy 7 years ago from London

Being another UK resident I've never really thought of these things as oddities, but it's refreshing to see the observations of people visiting your country. You brought back some memories of school dinners, as they sometimes used to serve faggots. They really are pretty disgusting!


KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

Thanks for stopping by folks!

Ethel & Kerry: LOL...I wish I had tried them while I was there.

Teresa: That's it...it's all about perspective. I guess that's a writer's greatest challenge, to make others see his/her perspective on a topic.

Candie: I've heard that about geese!

Moon Daisy: I'm sure you'd find lots of oddities here! So many opinions on faggots! Good? bad? wish I had tried them now!


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago

I enjoyed this Hub. It is well done. Cheery Oh!


KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

Thank you very much, James! Glad you enjoyed it! I remember mentioning to you about Tintern Abbey. Gypsy Willow has a great hub that has the most beautiful view of Tintern Abbey in Wales. Here's the link: http://hubpages.com/travel/The-Beauty-of-Wales


The Old Firm profile image

The Old Firm 7 years ago from Waikato/Bay Of Plenty, New Zealand

And a pack of fags are 20, (or 25) cigarettes!


KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

So true, TOF! I just didn't have a photo for those! How the heck you been?


The Old Firm profile image

The Old Firm 7 years ago from Waikato/Bay Of Plenty, New Zealand

Chipper thanks KCC (See, I can talk Limey too!)


KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

A man of many talents you are! Glad to see you!


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago

Oh yes, it was Gypsy Willow's fine Hub at the link above that inspired me to create me own about my trip to Wales.


KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

Oh wow, that's cool James! Because it was YOUR hub that inspired this one.


Business email profile image

Business email 7 years ago

It seems quaint and funny but you should try living there for 40 years like I did, it is certainly not much fun. You are taxed to death, the so called free medical care that you actually (through stealth taxes) pay a fortune for is so bad you only dare use it in a total emergency, I have some real horror stories. The English people are generally good, but they like to fight for no reason whatsoever, a wrong look is all it takes, how do I know? I am one of them. The society is so oppressive with the communist regime in charge, freedom of speech or anything else does not exist, that's why I left, real shame, it used to be a great palce.


KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

I'm sorry you had a bad experience Business email. I've only visited there and married an Englishman. All I know is Texas. I love Texas. Does it have faults? You betcha. I hope you're happy wherever you are now.


BristolBoy profile image

BristolBoy 7 years ago from Bristol

There are certainly some very interesting pictures here and I am sure if you were in the UK for much longer you would get even more unusual/crazy pictures of British things etc (think Morris dancing or chasing a massive cheese down a hill). Near me there is a bank branch which is even smaller than the one you show, and looks even more unlike a bank. There is also an extremely narrow road probably smaller than the one in your picture which is on a major bus route with 8 or more buses an hour going along it-despite the fact that they only fit through once they have put their wingmirrors in!


KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

Thanks BristolBoy! I'll have to ask my husband about the Morris dancing or chasing cheese! Frankly the roads scare me to death with their narrowness. The hedgerows make it even worse!


BristolBoy profile image

BristolBoy 7 years ago from Bristol

You can't be good old fashioned Cornish hedges and their equivalent elsewhere. They are stone walls retaining soil and can be many feet high, with normal hedging/bushes growing out of the top. Should imagine they are very nasty, especially if you crash into them at 60mph (which is the speed limit on many single track roads!).


mistyhorizon2003 profile image

mistyhorizon2003 7 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

Faggots truly are delicious, a bit like a big fluffy pork meat ball in a rich gravy. I loved them as a kid, and I still love them now, plus they are an inexpensive meal. :)


malco profile image

malco 7 years ago from All over, travels a lot.

you can add my UK beach hut to the list then!


KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

Well Malco, I did head over to check out your UK beach hut. I do find it interesting how UKers still insist on being on top of one another. I know it's a space issue, but in Texas we enjoy our privacy too much to be that close together. Even more so on vacation (holiday)! Here's a link to malco's hut http://hubpages.com/travel/Beach-Hut-Heaven


malco profile image

malco 7 years ago from All over, travels a lot.

Yeah, did you notice though, there was nobody there! Get the timing right, and you get the beach to yourself. i.e. avoid weekends.

You are right though, we do congregate!


KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

I did notice that. Looked sorda like a ghost town. I kept expecting to see some tumbleweeds roll along the beach there. LOL


Camping Dan profile image

Camping Dan 7 years ago

Nice pics! The drink van is just bizarre. It makes me think of the dog van on Dumb & Dumber. As for the work zone careful where you show that since many people could lose a really simple job here in the states with that info.


LondonGirl profile image

LondonGirl 7 years ago from London

Great hub - they don't look at all odd to me, and it's great to see what does look strange!


KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

Thanks Camping Dan! I loved the van, such a cute way to advertise. We love wasting money here in the states, don't we? That unmanned light system was awesome.

Thanks for stopping by, I'll have to go check out some of your hubs since I don't remember seeing you around.

LG....thanks! Looks like home to you, doesn't it? LOL I knew all you UKers would get a kick out of what us 'foreigners' think is odd. You'd likewise have a field day here.


LondonGirl profile image

LondonGirl 7 years ago from London

I'm sure I would, you get used to the things around you, they are "normal"


Funnebone 7 years ago

snicker snicker..faggots and peas


KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

Behave.....LOL


KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

LOL...that too, LG!


Jon Green profile image

Jon Green 7 years ago from Frome, Somerset, UK

Nice hub. You might enjoy some of our wacky comedians - Bill Bailey and Eddie Izzard are both very funny on English oddities.

Jon Green


KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

Yes, Jon, my husband introduced me to Bill Bailey. I do like him. I don't think I've heard anything on Eddie Izzard but I'll look him up! Thanks!


surfgatinho profile image

surfgatinho 7 years ago from Cornwall UK

You're being far to kind! There's plenty of wierder stuff we do over here!


KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

LOL...Give me a break Sufgatinho! I was only in England a total of 8 days I think. We drove over 2000 miles during that time and there's only so much a gal can see! LOL But, I'll make you a deal. If you write THAT hub, I'll put a link here to it. Deal?


Dolores Monet profile image

Dolores Monet 7 years ago from East Coast, United States

Is that outdoor carpeting covering the innocent drink van? I love it. Hand it to the Brits, they sure know how to be cute.


KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

Yes, I think it is, Dolores! Made to look like grass. We thought it was cute too.


scramblingman profile image

scramblingman 7 years ago

I really enjoyed your hub, thank you!


KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

Thank you, Scramblingman!


maggs224 profile image

maggs224 7 years ago from Sunny Spain

This hub so reminds me of home, it would be so nice just to pop into that cafe and order that £3.95 special faggots are a special favourite of my husband and son yummy!

I remember one trip to the USA when my husband got off the highway to go and see Billy the kids grave at one point on the way we passed under a very ordinary looking bridge that had a plaque that stated 'An historic bridge built 1937' we fell about laughing at this our house was older than the bridge, we did think for a while about getting a plaque made for the house saying 'An historic house built 1935' lol loved the hub.


KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

My husband would be laughing right there with you Maggs! Back when he and I were first chatting online and I was describing my town to him, we figured out that the town I live in was founded much later than when his flat was built! We think houses are ancient if they were built in the late 1800s.


Tom Cornett profile image

Tom Cornett 7 years ago from Ohio

I love to learn...this was interesting and fun! Thanks! :)


KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

I'm so glad you stopped by Tom and that you found it fun and interesting!


LEWJ 6 years ago

Lively pictures! Good hub.


KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 6 years ago from Central Texas Author

LOL..thanks Lewj! Thanks for breathing some life into this old hub. It's one I enjoyed creating, but it's be lying rather dormant lately. :)


daisydayz profile image

daisydayz 4 years ago from Cardiff

Hehe! I love that you find these oddities as you are quite right they are perfectly normal things to me in the UK, although that innocent smoothie van is great, and I wouldn't advise hand feeding a swan! I do on the other hand adore faggots, peas and gravy! But can see why it wouldn't go down so well in the US. Great Hub

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