Burning effigies in the street… a fine British tradition.

The British are a rum lot… every year on November the 5th they celebrate the failure of Guy Fawkes to blow up Parliament in 1605 by burning effigies all across the country.

The fine habit of giving coins to children begging with their home-made effigy “Peny for the Guy!” is in decline. The fireworks children buy with the money they are given have become safer and illegal to those under 16 years. There are fewer street bonfires in many towns, shunned for the larger, safer organised events.

Of course Guy Fawkes, purportedly part of a Jesuit plot, was catholic and part of a religious minority persecuted by the Protestants under Elizabeth I and now James I of England (James VI of Scotland). Parliament on the 5th November 1605 was packed with nobles, the House of Lords, Commons and of course the King. Perhaps Guy Fawkes and his colleagues were right to worry about religious rights being trampled on… something which some in Britain today would sympathise with. Quite a terrorist response they planned, to wipe out all of parliament (including catholics) in one go!

One wonders whether the British should be mourning the passing of a tradition where communities gather together with their children to organise a bonfire and plan a small firework display for which they are responsible for safety. We should celebrate such quirky traditions.

Global Nomad101 would love to hear about any quirky traditions your community may have, after all we love to celebrate diversity.


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Need some help getting shut eye… Pzizz

In highly stressed environments it is not uncommon to sleep so deeply that even a rocket hitting a nearby hill doesn’t wake one. Minor earthquakes hit cities like Kabul routinely but how many of us sleep through and are suprised to discover the next day that others were not only woken but waited in the garden for the earthquake to subside!

Pzizz is designed for those of us who find it difficult to take a nap during the day or sleep well at night. Pzizz can be played on MP3 players, i-pods or computers… a soothing combination of relaxing verse and music can be timed to provide you with a nap of duration you choose, waking you up at the appointed time, if you prefer an alarm will also sound. Alternatively the sleep option doesn’t wake you. Radio Leo reviewed this on 24/10/06 and if you wish to purchase one of the products the TWIT coupon name will give you a 25% discount.

Ok so that is unfair, Pzizz is published a personal life coaching system helping tackle stress and energising oneself amongst other things, Judith Woods review in the Telegraph offers more insight.

For those of us who are rather intense, get stressed easliy, travel alot or cannot sleep through the odd interruption common to the environments in which we work. Pzizz will hopefully offer an alternative outlet!