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Jewish Journal

London Report Part 2

by Ilana Angel

December 28, 2012 | 4:40 pm

This is a very entertaining family.  By entertaining of course I mean totally blog worthy. The Englishman has a lovely father, who has a delightful girlfriend.  His mother is divine and she has a charming boyfriend.  The brother below him may be my new favorite human being, and the youngest brother is hilarious, his wife is adorable, their three kids are delicious.

By delicious of course I mean these boys should have their own reality show. They are 12, 9 & 6, very cute, and have accents so thick that after four days I am now able to understand every third word they say.  The oldest one tells me he is blamed for everything, the middle one says nobody listens to him, and the youngest one is spoiled because he is the baby.

They fight hard, laugh harder, and are insanely protective of each other.  They remind me of my two sisters and myself when we were young.  I am the middle child so I am somewhat partial to the middle boy. I would never say it to them of course, but I may slip him an extra 50 in Monopoly money when I am the banker.  These kids are hilarious and I am in love.

Their parents are lovely. They are young, have been together since they were 15 and 19, and have a great love affair.  They are very cute. By cute of course I mean I would watch a show about them too.  They have three boys, and their house is madness.  The really good kind of madness that makes mothers wish they had more kids and kids wish they had more siblings.

Sidebar: The wife asked her husband to empty the dishwasher and he said no.  I told him that only when he could pass a watermelon out of his bum could he refuse to empty the dishwasher. He informed me that women were allowed to vote, which was real progress, and that should be enough. He also said women milk pregnancy and their periods for sympathy.

He looks like my Englishman, has a wicked sense of humor, and I know he was simply trying to push my buttons, but I’m writing about it because there are some who know his true identity and I want them to know what he said. This man that we all love, is a husband who won’t empty the dishwasher and thinks childbirth is a piece of cake and does not hurt that much.

In four days we have settled into a sibling rivalry that I love.  He gets a thrill from pushing my buttons and his banter with the Englishman is perfection. When they reminisce about childhood shenanigans and who is to blame for things, it is hilarious. He feels like my brother, both literally and figuratively because he reminds me so much of my own little brother.

The Englishman’s other brother has a wonderful worldview.  He talks to everyone he meets, and makes friends everywhere he goes.  He gives money to people who ask for help, and finds humor in most things.  He shares a sense of humor with his brothers, looks just like them, joins in the family storytelling, and is truly a remarkable human being.

He is the middle brother and to hear him speak of my Englishman is very special.  He loves him in a profound way and of all the family I think he misses him the most.  He looks at my Englishman with pure love, takes joy out of everything he says, laughs at the same things, and is still waiting for his brother to move back to England, 32 years after he left.

The Englishman’s father is handsome and charming.  He is funny, sarcastic, witty, and clearly their father.  They look the same, talk the same, and laugh the same.  I was looking forward to hugging him and in the end it lived up to all my expectations.  He is a warm man and when he tells me he loves me I close my eyes and hear my own father's voice. 

The Englishman's mother is beautiful.  Her eyes are big and blue and when I met her and she hugged me, I didn't want her to ever let me go.  I hope my son loves me when he is as old as my Englishman, the way my Englishman loves her.  When we sit to talk she holds my hand, she plays with my hair, and when he told her he loved me, she said she loved me too.

I love my family.  Not because I have to, but because I choose to.  It is now the same with the family of my Englishman.  I love them.  They have welcomed my son and me with open arms and open hearts.  I feel safe with these people and when they tell me they want my Englishman to move back one day, I know should that day come, it will be wonderful for us.

My son would live here in a heartbeat and is looking at English universities as an option. The Englishman's kids would also absolutely love to live in England and so it is a real possibility that we would end up here one day. They are great people and it has been a pleasure spending this week with them. By pleasure of course I am not including what happened tonight. 

I am still in shock and so it is difficult, but I will blog about it when I have recovered.  Tonight I experienced a family ritual that will haunt me for years to come.  I have never seen anything like it and not sure I can find the words to properly explain it. The way this family plays Monopoly is unlike any experience I have ever had.  Ever. Seriously, ever.

I love Monopoly and grew up playing.  I remember serious sibling rivalry when we played in my family as a kid.  We don’t play as adults because the aggression and stress is too much for us now, but as crazy as my family was about this game, the Englishman’s family has us beat.  Wait until you hear what they do. It is frightening so you’ll have to keep the faith.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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Ilana Angel writes two blogs for JewishJournal.com. KEEPING THE FAITH is about her worldview as a single Jewish mother, and KEEPING IT REAL is all about reality television....

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