Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Illegal Contraband!

Last time I went to the UK I got snowed in for the final 4 days of my trip and arrived back in the USA with SPACE in my case! That is not good! I wasn't going to make the same mistake again. Highly unlikely that I would get snowed in, in April but you never know! As it was, the weather was glorious. While I was soaking up the Sun in England, tragically 29 people died in the tornado that swept across North Carolina last week, not 20 miles form where we live!
After arriving in the UK, as soon as I had had a snooze, a cup of tea and a 'Richmond' sausage sarnie I was ready for the supermarket. I'm not entirely sure what you can and can't take into the USA but I think customs would have been fascinated by my UK essential purchases. I’m not sure what they say about me but every one of them was essential and if customs had stopped me and tried to take my contraband from me they would have had to have prised some of it from my cold dead fingers before I would willingly give them up. They are the things that will help sustain my Britishness until I next go home for a fix:

1 pack of M & S Toilet roll
Beautiful cream loo roll with gold swirly patterns. Stepford wives eat your heart out! I have put it in the downstairs loo and need to make sure hubby and kiddies do not use it. It is too pretty for anything shitty!  It is purely for show as you can only get white loo roll in America!
America is not a nation of curry lovers. You have to travel far and wide to track down spices. I smuggled loads in at Christmas but was still missing some – Star Anise (not sure what it is but a Gordon Ramsey recipe demanded it), curry leaves, cardamom pods, cumin seeds (now, I know you are not supposed to bring seeds into the USA but I don’t think I will plant them and grow a cardamom or cumin tree), black onion seeds (I am tempted to plant those!) I am building up to inviting the good folk of Azalea lane* to a curry fest at our house
PG Tips
No explanation needed (240 bag box with 50% free) Box of 40 in local US supermarket was about £4!!!
Sure cotton fresh deodorant x5
Believe it or not the range of deodorants here is just rubbish. They have little choice and most of it smells like that old pink or blue block toilet freshener you used to get. Vile!
Schwartz roast beef Gravy mix x5
You cannot beat it and I can’t bloody make gravy without it!
Digestive Biscuits
A neighbour borrowed a recipe book and wanted to make a cheesecake with digestives as the base. I promised I would get her some in the UK. I am sitting here dunking them into my tea as I type. I hope she has forgotten!
Cadburys Chocolate bars 230g x 4
To give to friends to show them how bad Hershey’s is! That is, if I don’t eat it all first
Fry’s chocolate Cream x 4 bars
My dear Irish friend in the USA misses it. I have never met anyone before who actually likes it!
Kiddies Easter eggs x 8 plus 4 chocolate bunnies
The Easter bunny was generous but our return to the States was only a day after Easter. Even my children could not consume the vast amount of chocolate they got in one day
Sainsbury’s Moroccan style wrap kit
If you have tried it you’ll know why! If you haven’t, you should!
Mint Sauce
Not available stateside and I need it for the curry night I am planning
M & S knickers (pack of 5)!
-or panties as they say in the USA but panties make them sound sexy – these are comfortable, functional knickers! And you can’t beat M & S for comfort and function!!! There is a bit of lace – not complete granny pants. 2 of the 5 pairs were all lace at the front but I swapped them for plain ones from another packet – very naughty I know but someone else might appreciate more pairs of lace pants. I don’t like see-through pants. Who wants to see through them? Some things are better covered up! My hubby continually reminds me I am supposed to be a lady in public and a whore in bed not the other way round. For all my loud and obnoxious language and sauciness in public I am really quite shy and old fashioned! Honestly!
Union Jack paraphernalia
This warrants a blog all of its own – in fact it will result in two or three blogs yet to be written. I purchased shit loads of the stuff as it was in abundance in the shops, including 2 trays, dip dish, pitcher, cocktail shaker, bunting, serviettes, paper cups and plates
I also got 4 teabag trays (those little things to put soggy tea bags on – these were shaped like a teapot with a union jack on- for the kiddies teachers along with a gift box of tea bags, also decorated with red buses, telephone boxes and union jacks!!!) A union jack eco bag and a key ring.
There would have been more but space in the case and glimpses of sanity stopped me.
Quilt cover x1 superking, with fitted sheet and pillow cases
American beds are different sizes. You don’t think of these things when you move here, that even trying to buy a new quilt cover causes undue stress because you bloody well can’t! Only a double bed is the same size! No good when you have a king size bed!

I had taken things to the UK such as an enormous tub of Cheese balls for my niece so I had space in the case for the return journey. I was marveling at how incredibly well I had done to fit all of this into the cases along with a remote control helicopter my dad has brought my son for his birthday and 3 rooms of dolls house furniture I ‘won’ on Ebay when I got a message from my sister earlier today. I had left a wash load full of our clothes in her washing machine!
Mmmmooooooom! Can you put the stuff I left in your case for me when you come over – along with some more of the above! x

Azalea lane* I have referred to where I live as Wisteria Lane but as we are in North Carolina and they love Azaleas I think I shall hence forth call it Azalea Lane!


  1. We will be like pirates with all this smuggling.Have plenty of the above items already to put in my suitcase and have already arranged to bring the washing.I will bring as much as i can get in my case without going overwieght.I thought that i was the only one to swap things over in packets.

  2. Interesting mix of undeclared goods there Jane. Smuggler and knicker thief too! A most undesirable USA resident. Never had you down as a bog roll connoisseur though!

  3. I should be ashamed of myself! Of all the things I could fill my suitcase with and I choose M&S knickers and loo roll!