Last night I woke at 1am and watched the votes from Brexit rolling in. Nobody thought it was possible, it was unthinkable and yet it happened. My country is now potentially out of Europe. I watched from the Czech Republic, where we’d broken down in this phenomenal heat wave. A Czech police officer had given us a lift and organised a tow truck for us. A mechanic named Joseph was helping us with the car. We were communicating in a strange mix of German, French and Romanian that gets us by in most parts of Europe. I was a happy European and so were all the other Europeans living and working in London. All of my husband’s colleagues, the people without which he couldn’t get his job done, were just getting on with their lives.
Now we can’t. For the foreseeable future nobody will have a clue what is going on nor be able to make any plans. My life, and I’m using myself purely as an example here, and my children’s futures are turned upside down, screwed, by this horrific vote. And why? Because a certain demographic in the UK don’t like foreigners. Because a certain demographic believed the lies.
We had a dream, we were going to build a place in Romania for kids from all over the world so they could experience the country ways and learn about a unique culture. We wanted to be a part of Project Worldschool. Not for money, just because it was a great thing to do. I think that dream could now be over but we won’t know for years and in the mean time Britain will be a hostile, expensive and broken country.
So what will we do?
I don’t know.
Today we will get in the car that now works, sort of, thanks to the Czech car doctor and limp on home to London. Chef is in work on Monday and it will be very interesting to gauge feeling in the city. Very sad for him to face his colleagues.
So yesterday we drove on, past Prague, Frankfurt, Koblentz and on to Bonn. Driving across Europe on never-ending autobahns isn’t particularly enjoyable, you see nothing of the countries you’re passing through. Our hotel in Bonn is nice, a budget chain but one of the nicest I’ve ever seen. We’ve eaten great pizza served by Italians talking German and bought cold beers from a vending machine. We needed them after temperatures reached 35C.
In a few hours we’ll pass through Belgium and France to catch the ferry to the UK. Home. Only it won’t feel like home any more.
I received so many messages from fellow Brits yesterday, all heartbroken. We’re feeling this deeply, this is the day the country we loved died. London will no longer by an amazing global example of a multicultural city. We were proud of that.
And this is all because some people, and only some, don’t like it. The vote has nothing to do with the feelings of half the population and yet we will all have to live with the consequences. It’s tragic.