Oh, To Be In England. Wait — I WAS #ThrowbackThursday

I’ve been to England twice, in fact: once in 1968 and once in 1991. This is a picture from — OBVS — 1968.

MA in England

in England

Dig that Carnaby Street hair. So unlike the hair of the actual British people around me.

This picture was taken by Mr. Smallcomb, the father of the family I was staying with as a cultural exchange, at a school fete (note flags flying in the background). I don’t remember any three-legged races or Mother’s Egg-And-Spoon Competitions or any of that, but I do remember some EXCELLENT ice cream with a stick of something crunchy stuck in it. Trust me to remember the food.

Mrs. Smallcomb introduced me to salmon sandwiches, probably to her dismay, because I adored them. They also introduced me to Ribena, scampi, fish-and-chips, afternoon tea, and Dr. Who (Patrick Troughton).

Mrs. Smallcomb would get up every morning and bring everybody tea or hot Ribena and toast in bed. Then she would go back downstairs and make breakfast. Spoiled them, she did. The girl my age in the family thought I was nuts to make my bed every day. That was Mum’s job. I was like, “Now it’s my job.”

What a good time I had.

A WRITING PROMPT FOR YOU: What was your main character — or someone your main character knows, if your mc is too young — doing in 1968?



I was born in Louisville, Kentucky, but now live in the woods in southern Indiana. Though I only write fiction, I love to read non-fiction. The more I learn about this world, the more fantastic I see it is.

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One thought on “Oh, To Be In England. Wait — I WAS #ThrowbackThursday

  1. Holly Jahangiri

    March 26, 2015 at 8:47am

    I do wish I’d studied abroad, somewhere, for a semester or a year. I hung out with the international students here at home, instead. 🙂 And I did get to travel, with my family, but never long enough to really be immersed in a different place and culture.

    You could’ve written so much more… have you kept in touch with anyone from there, over the years?

    Permalink  ⋅ Reply
    • Author

      Marian Allen

      March 26, 2015 at 1:24pm

      The summer after I returned, a boy I had exchanged contact information with came to America with a Greyhound bus pass and was traveling the country, staying with American tourists he’d met. So he came and stayed with us for a few days and we took him around to see some sights. I kept in touch with Mrs. Smallcomb for a year or so, but then the correspondence lapsed.

      I COULD have written much more! Maybe I’ll dig out my travel diary and do a series, after April A-to-Z and Story A Day May.

      Permalink  ⋅ Reply
  2. Jane

    March 26, 2015 at 10:30am

    Yes, you WERE pretty groovy in 1968!

    Me? I was sitting around in the Sub at the UC cutting classes, listening to the juke box (which was playing mostly the longest songs to get their money’s worth)(Donovan’s Atlantis, etc), and talking to all my new friends: Cliff, Lelia, David the poet, Sajid the chem grad student. etc etc.
    (Yes, he wrote me a poem!)

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    • Author

      Marian Allen

      March 26, 2015 at 1:25pm

      Cliff! Lelia! I don’t remember David and Sajid; guess I didn’t meet them. Did you keep the poem?

      Permalink  ⋅ Reply
      • Jane

        March 27, 2015 at 9:16am

        You bet I kept it!!!
        It was—quite evocative!!

        Permalink  ⋅ Reply

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