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British Expat Newsletter: July 2017

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In this issue

This month

Brexit rumbles on. This month’s negotiations seem to have been characterised by EU exasperation at what they perceive as a lack of British preparedness or even commitment to serious negotiation – illustrated in the media by a photo of the negotiating table, the EU team sitting with thick indexed dossiers on the table in front of them and the British side apparently with none at all. Not to mention Brexit Secretary David Davis having to leave Brussels almost as soon as he had arrived, to take part in a vote in the House of Commons. His Departmental media team insisted that his return had nothing to do with the need to vote, but it was a three-line whip – in other words, he would have had to be on his death-bed to be excused attendance. (Then again, thinking back to Britain’s last minority administration, Jim Callaghan’s Labour government in the late 1970s, and the lengths to which the Government and Opposition whips went in coercing even seriously ill MPs to vote, maybe not even then…)

The problem is, the negotiations are complex. And not just the ones in Brussels. No, there’s a whole lot of infighting going on within the Cabinet, with hard-core “hard” Brexiters such as Davis, Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, and International Trade Secretary Liam Fox struggling to defend the dominant position they held before the general election, against those favouring a “softer” Brexit such as Chancellor Philip Hammond, emboldened by the electorate’s apparent rejection of Theresa May’s bid for a free hand in the Brexit negotiations. May herself is currently on walking holiday in Switzerland and Italy. A masterly withdrawal from an undignified squabble, or a tacit recognition of loss of authority? It looks set to be an interesting autumn in British politics.

Talking of holidays, we head to Greece for our Pic of the Week, and the island of Santorini, where tourists can ride from the harbour to the village of Oia by donkey. Not everyone’s happy about that, and Devon-based charity The Donkey Sanctuary advise tourists to keep their STEPS checklist in mind to ensure that both they and the donkeys are free from harm.

And this month’s Quick Quiz is a pot-luck assembly of five questions on different themes. I reckon most of you should be able to get at least one or two of them right – but on the other hand you’ll probably all learn something new from the answers too!

Are you ever flummoxed by fancy foodie words, mystified by menus, or confused by culinary terms? Then head on over to and become enlightened by our quirky A-Z of food. And it’s got cartoons in it! Don’t forget to tell all your friends about it too.

Meanwhile, of course, the forum continues to provide information on a wide range of expat issues, as well as the opportunity to socialise with like-minded people all around the world. You can see the full range of discussion boards here.

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British Expat Amazon Shopping

Amazon don’t just do books, you know. We’ve teamed up with them to bring you the ultimate in online shopping—from a micro SD card to a garden shed! A great way to do your shopping online, especially if the shops aren’t up to much in your part of the world.
BE Amazon Shop: UK & EU | BE Amazon Shop: non-EU

So there’s a round-up of all that’s been going on. Come on over and see for yourself! Don’t forget…
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Till next time…

Happy surfing!

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