Saturday, November 29, 2008

Vive La ?

 The words in blue are the opening lines of the 1949 movie 'Adam's Rib'.


I admit I'm part of the problem, so who is there to blame?

The world is becoming 'sameish', with everything the same.

It's been happening forever, but, in my time, it's gained pace,

And now a place that was unique is just every other place.

It happened with the Romans, when they madly 'Romanised'.

Their influence on Britain still cannot be disguised.

It happened with 'The Empire' when Britain ruled the waves,

Resulting in the cricket for which every Indian craves.

I've lived in different countries, adding a 'Pommie' touch,

Even though the natives didn't like it very much.

So this isn't an accusation; just a sigh for times gone past,

And a geriatric whimper for a mix that's come too fast.

I lived in the South of England, only twenty miles from France,

And I longed to see that country. In my teens I got my chance.

As I stepped down from the ferry the Frenchness blew my mind!

Everything was different! Smells of a different kind!

Buildings looked exotic! Chatter sort of sang!

That wine, that sky, that elegance! That other-worldly tang!

It wasn't a case of better. It wasn't a case of worse.

It was just that everything I saw was England in reverse.

Now if I take the ferry across that narrow sea,

I'm faced with Marks and Spencers, MacDonalds and KFC.

Everyone speaks English, eats sushi, or ragout,

Everything's pseudo-foreign; you must agree that's true.

Oh the monuments are national, but they are in the past,

They're just an ancient backdrop for an up-and-coming cast.

So when I see the photograph of all the different races

Who've walked the Bridge, having arrived from hundreds of other places.
I feel no animosity, for I'm an immigrant too,

But I kind of yearn for times gone by when  the world was still quite new

And a trip to a foreign country, like my early one to France,

Was enough to make one shout out loud 'Vive la difference!'

(The climbers on the bridge represent the nationals who have made Australia their home.)


Bear Naked said...

I know just that feeling.
I remember our first trip to Cozumel,Mexico how shocked I was to see a Domino's pizza.


linda may said...

I know what you mean, but we all come from somewhere. When new people come to our country they bring their culture with them and we all benefit.Just look at the great foods and choices we have nowadays compared with 30 years ago when all we just about had was fish and chips. Also evident with sport, entertainment etc etc. I.E "The wog boy" movie, have you seen that? The next generation becomes homogenized into our society but bits and pieces of what they bought with them stay and become a part of our expanding culture.I think that is kind of nice though. I do keep my aussie identity and am proud of it but i know it is flavoured by many other countries.

Kat said...

The poem sounded more to be "part of the solution"..!!!!

It's a poem that makes me want to tell "Vive la rinkly rhymes" :))))

Photo Cache said...

first time to see it from this angle.

my entry is here:

Sylvia K said...

I have traveled a good bit and have found the same things -- what happened to "difference"??? Now, not only people copy people, but countries do the same! Too bad! Great post!


eileeninmd said...

What a great post and photo! What would it be like to go back in time when everything wasn't the same?

Regina said...

Beautiful place.

magiceye said...

the sameness is possibly only in the urban areas where 'globalization' has taken root
come to rural india and you can sure shout 'viva la difference' once again!!

Baruch said...

It is sad that the world is becoming one. I sometimes feel like we are loosing our true identity .....

Oman said...

lovely shots of your place. thanks for sharing.

Rallentanda said...

Monoculture is depressing.The Coca Cola culture's tentacles have covered the globe.Resist I say!