Bitesize Episode 33 - A Walk in the British Countryside| Ft. Harry

Apr 2 / Charlie Baxter

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What's this episode about?

In this episode, Charlie takes a trip back to his motherland after two and a half years and finally meets up with Harry. They go for a lovely stroll in the countryside. Join them as they walk and discuss their April fool's day experiences. Listen till the end and find out what is inside the librarian's locker. 
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Transcript of BEP Bitesize Ep 33 - Premium - A Walk in the British Countryside with Harry.mp3

Charlie:
Hello there, you lovely listener. As you know, this is the British English podcast. Even though I currently reside in Australia. But after a long wait, the international borders have reopened after getting to a substantial amount of vaccinations in Australia. And so I managed to take a trip back to the motherland. And whilst I was in the UK I met up with Harry and we went for a lovely little stroll in the countryside of Surrey, which is where I was born and raised.

Charlie:
And I thought it would be nice to record a casual conversation around the idea of April Fools Day, which is on the 1st of April. Although to be fair, listening back, we didn't do a great job explaining April Fool's Day. So set your expectations low on that front and hopefully you can enjoy this episode for the sake of the relaxed conversation in the countryside. And because it's in the countryside, the audio is also not perfect at times due to the wind and things. But I was so charmed by the sounds of the countryside that I wanted to capture it anyway. So yes, with- with the bar set nice and low for this one, let's get into it!

Charlie:
So we're just walking around a lovely little bit of countryside in the UK while I'm back for a couple of weeks. Got Harry by my side. How are you doing?

Harry:
Good, thank you. Good to see you. Nice to have you back.

Charlie:
Absolutely delightful. Really enjoying the, the Englishness of it all. Because I've not been back for two and a half years. And I can imagine that you guys are picking up the sounds around our voices. And it's, to me, incredibly English. We've got some swans to our left. Took a little selfie, didn't we?

Harry:
We did, yeah.

Charlie:
We're going over a canal right now, and there's a lovely lock. What's a lock, Harry?

Harry:
Some kind of gate, barrier thing. Where they let boats through.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Harry:
And they change the height of the water, don't they.

Charlie:
Exactly. So you can go up and down hill.

Harry:
It's amazing how they do that. I didn't fancy defining that. You could probably define that way better than I.

Charlie:
Yeah, you did it. Yeah. So there's two- two gates and then the- the long barge or boat, canal boat, comes in, close the gates on both sides and then the water goes up or down, depending on whether you want to go up stream or downstream or uphill, downhill. And then you open the gates and you're- it's like a lift. A water lift. Like an elevator.

Harry:
Yeah.

Charlie:
Or a lift. Yeah.

Harry:
It's amazing, isn't it?

Charlie:
If you go that way a little bit.

Harry:
Yeah.

Charlie:
But we were just thinking about, you know, in a month's time, it will be April. What happens in April for us?

Harry:
Well, the first day of the month is called April Fools Day.

Charlie:
Exactly.

Harry:
And that's a time when- only on that day you're allowed to play tricks on your loved ones and your friends. Or your students if you're a teacher.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Harry:
Maybe I could arrive one hour late. So a lesson.

Charlie:
Or, your teacher, as a student. Were you doing that?

Harry:
Yeah. Yeah, yeah. Yeah.

Charlie:
But you reckon turning up an hour late for class would be a good one?

Harry:
Not if you're the student.

Charlie:
No.

Harry:
Because you're probably not going to get that time back.

Charlie:
Exactly.

Harry:
And as a teacher, you're probably going to lose that customer.

Charlie:
I'm tempted to walk over that. A bit scared.

Harry:
We can go down there, can't we?

Charlie:
Oh, yeah. It does say private. Oh.

Harry:
Who is that guy?

Charlie:
That looks like an old Royal Navy aeroplane. Again. I don't know if I'm making this up, but that sounds English. The engine just reminds me of Englishness.

Harry:
Well, yeah.

Charlie:
Anyway, so April Fool's Day, it is a day where you, you can prank each other. You can play tricks on each other. And I remember my dad and his colleague, they used to do ski trips and they would take all the kids skiing and they would very often play pranks on each other because they would stay in the same dormitory together. And they would do very little things like fill each other's shoes with sand or fold each other's beds in half under the duvet. And so they would get in. It was like half a bed.

Harry:
Oh, that's a good one. That's a good one.

Charlie:
I think one other option that- I think my student actually told me about this one, he filled a jar full of water and then like printed out his head and laminated it. And then he put it on the outside- no, on the inside of the jar. And close the lid and put it in the fridge. And it looks like somebody's head bubbling away in the fridge.

Harry:
Wow. A lot of work has gone into that. A lot of work. And that's quite- could be quite traumatising, couldn't it?

Charlie:
Yeah!

Harry:
To discover that. Jesus, you could just do like. I don't know, what could you do? A couple of meatballs and a sausage? And a jar. And make it look like you're pickling someone's testicles.

Charlie:
And that's- that's an April Fool's.

Harry:
Sure. Yeah. There's no better time to do it, is there? If we're to do it all year round.

Charlie:
Yeah, it's true.

Harry:
Yeah, there's all kinds of things like that. I remember one. I've never done this, but I've heard of friends doing it at school. On the toilet-.

Harry:
We were just getting pursued by a swan.

Harry:
You can- if you put clingfilm over the- the toilet. It looks like there's nothing on there. And you go for a wee and then the wee kind of bounces off. That's quite a good one.

Charlie:
That would be terrible for me.

Harry:
But you never do it in your own house.

Charlie:
So. Oh, I see. If you're sharing...

Harry:
Yeah, don't do it to, like your dad or your mum or something, 'cause you know, you're going to end up with piss on your own floor.

Charlie:
Yeah, that would.

Harry:
And you're probably gonna get in trouble with your parents, so...

Charlie:
Have you done that one?

Harry:
I've never done that one. I've heard of it. And it's, it's horrible. It's horrible.

Charlie:
The other one I was thinking of. But I think I'm getting confused with Halloween, actually, so forgive me, guys, but I remember with Trick or Treat.

Harry:
Oh, yeah. Yeah.

Charlie:
People used to shove an apple up the car's exhaust pipe.

Harry:
Oh, God.

Charlie:
And then that would just destroy the car.

Harry:
Oh, my God. That's awful. I think that's, that's the important thing with April Fools. They're supposed to be- it's supposed to be, like, good humoured fun.

Charlie:
Yes.

Harry:
Yeah. It shouldn't be something that actually cause too much pain or trauma for the recipient. It's got to be something quite light. Or it can be- oh, God, I had one! Actually, it wasn't April Fools, but it was like the Latin American equivalent.

Charlie:
Go on.

Harry:
So I had a sort of girlfriend from El Salvador when I was living in Spain, and I came back to Bedford for Christmas and- I just walked behind you, Charlie, it's windy. I came back to Bedford for Christmas and she was messaging me. She said, I think I'm pregnant.

Charlie:
Oh, wow.

Harry:
And she's like 'Yeah, I missed my period. Doing a test now.' She's like, 'Yeah, I am pregnant'. And I'm home. You know, this is a casual relationship. She already had a baby, so I knew she was probably willing to keep this one. And I was like, Oh my God, I'm going to be a fucking dad. And this isn't even a proper relationship.

Charlie:
Oh.

Harry:
I was panicking so much, but obviously it was a lie. And I was. I said, that is not funny. That's too much.

Charlie:
And so did she say 'April Fool's!' Or it was like her equivalent, her culture's equivalent of a pranking day.

Harry:
She's- yeah, she, she said it was, whatever they called it. I don't know what that is. Maybe they could comment, comment in and say what that is. I'm not sure what the day is.

Charlie:
So anyone listening from El Salvador?

Harry:
Yeah. Or just like maybe a Latin American thing?

Charlie:
Yeah.

Harry:
Maybe it's continent wide. Yeah, that's a pretty nasty one, isn't it?

Charlie:
Yeah, that is. Did you- did you, did you start to contemplate what you would do if that was real?

Harry:
Yeah. Yeah, I did!

Charlie:
Were you...

Harry:
That's what you do, isn't it? When someone tells you they're pregnant, you start thinking, 'okay, how am I going to get out of this one?'

Charlie:
Get out of this one? So did you think at all about raising her?

Harry:
I did think about it. I thought, well, maybe it wouldn't be that bad. Oh.

Charlie:
Maybe I'd still be with her.

Harry:
Yeah. Yeah. Has anyone ever played a prank on you?

Charlie:
Definitely. I mean, at school, it was happening all the time, but-

Harry:
Yeah, that's just bullying, isn't it?

Charlie:
Yeah, it wasn't April Fools Day. It's just every day. They just kicked me in the head.

Harry:
Yeah.

Charlie:
No, I wasn't kicked in the head at school. Just kicked-.

Harry:
A baby.

Charlie:
Just kicked everywhere else. Just as a baby.

Harry:
Were you ever kicked out of a classroom?

Charlie:
Probably on April Fools Day because I was mucking around.

Harry:
Scallywag.

Charlie:
I was, occasionally, rarely, though I imagine you were kicked out far more frequently than me.

Harry:
I was always getting kicked out.

Charlie:
Yeah?

Harry:
Yeah.

Charlie:
Were you one of the most regular corridor visitors?

Harry:
I had my moments. I wasn't always bad, but I went through phases where I was a bit of a, bit of a scallywag. I was getting into trouble and I was thriving off the, you know, the reactions of my classmates and stuff. So if I could get a laugh out of the group, I would normally sacrifice my, my school's success, by playing a joke or farting really loudly or something like that or something immature.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Harry:
Saying a little jokey comment. But I did grow out of it. I realised that this isn't the way to be. And I did start working a bit harder.

Charlie:
All right. Good. Good to hear. You sorted it all out. You bucked your ideas up.

Harry:
I bucked my ideas up. Yeah, it's a good... good phrase, that. Buck your ideas up. Come on. You want to go to uni, don't you? You want to go and meet Charlie at uni?

Charlie:
I just went on on Google to find some examples.

Harry:
Oh yeah.

Charlie:
And it reminded me of the university pranks we used to do.

Harry:
Oh, yeah?

Charlie:
What did you- what did you do in your block? I mean, we- we lived in the same dorms, but some people did some extreme pranks to each other, I think was like wrapping every single item that somebody's owned in aluminium foil.

Harry:
That sounds familiar. That's such a waste of tinfoil.

Charlie:
Or plastic.

Harry:
Or plastic.

Charlie:
Yeah, exactly.

Harry:
Well, at least you can reuse that tinfoil, but with the plastic. Yeah, that's. That's terrible waste.

Charlie:
Yeah, that's true.

Harry:
That is annoying. That is annoying. Not the worst thing I've heard, but it's pretty bad. That's pretty bad. I actually wrapped a couple of Christmas presents in tinfoil this year because I'd forgotten to- to wrap two presents. I just forgotten them. I completely forgotten them. And then I got to my mum dad's house and there were two people that I hadn't brought gifts for, so. Oh shit. So I ran back down. I was like, Right, I'm not going to wrap these properly, tinfoil. Because you just wrap it round, you scrunch it, and Bob's your uncle, you've got a very nicely wrapped, shiny gift.

Charlie:
That's a great way to use 'Bob's your uncle', because it's hard to explain 'Bob's your uncle' without giving you examples.

Harry:
Yeah.

Charlie:
And that is a good way because it's just 'and that's the completion of it'. Easy, done, on to the next thing in life.

Harry:
And that's that.

Charlie:
And that's that. Yeah. So what was your, what was your family, friends or family's reaction to that wrapping?

Harry:
I think a bit of a chuckle. Oh, Harry, what are you like? And then I think they opened them and then they probably had a disappointing look on their face.

Charlie:
What was it?

Harry:
Um, just more tinfoil, I think.

Charlie:
Yeah, it was. It was actual tin foil.

Harry:
Yeah.

Charlie:
A new, a new packet of tin foil.

Harry:
Yeah. It's like ten metres of tin foil.

Charlie:
Oh. Ten metres. You spoilt them.

Harry:
It's about a year's worth.

Charlie:
Yeah. Unless you're wrapping presents in tin foil then you probably need to...

Harry:
Yes. Yeah. Well maybe I'll get my presents in tin foil next year.

Charlie:
Well, now I know you appreciate it. I will. I will do that.

Harry:
I just think it's good if you can reuse stuff as well.

Charlie:
Yes.

Harry:
You know, I can use that when I cook a fish.

Charlie:
Yes. Yeah, yeah. Perfect.

Harry:
Provided it wasn't used to wrap anything that was too dirty.

Charlie:
No.

Harry:
If you only be given a dirty present...

Charlie:
No, you don't. Or raw chicken is a present.

Harry:
Yeah, exactly. I recently had COVID and when I had COVID, my dad was doing my shopping for me. He was really helpful actually. Every day. Literally, every day is like, Can I get you anything from the shop?

Charlie:
Oh, bless him.

Harry:
And when someone offers to go to the shop for you, you find yourself thinking, Oh, what else could I, what else might I need?

Charlie:
Where else can I send him?

Harry:
Because I could tell he just wanted an excuse to get out.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Harry:
You know, he's not working. He's doing his art and stuff, but he likes to go out and be helpful and useful.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Harry:
So I, one day I sent him out for some shampoo and it came in a Sainsbury's bag that I think he'd reused, good on him. But this, I pulled it out and the shampoo is like dirty. There was like mud on it. So I said, where did you get this? In a skip or something?

Charlie:
And he said, Yes. Just a skip down the road. They were giving out shampoo.

Harry:
Shampoo. Oh yeah. There you go, shampoo. Ridiculous. I think it was just a dirty bag that he reused. I hope your listeners are enjoying the background noises, but the sounds of nature are lovely.

Charlie:
That's kind of why I wanted to do it right now, because I'm obsessed with how beautiful it is around me. And I think- I think the audio can pick up some of the beauty.

Harry:
It can.

Charlie:
Minus the tree cutting.

Harry:
Yeah. The crunching of leaves and sticks underfoot.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Harry:
It's so nice..

Charlie:
Yeah, exactly. But this is just a little bite sized episode. So it was just a quick one around April Fools Day. I just wanted to leave you guys with the, the one that I just thought of. Again, this is not April Fool's Day. So what Harry said earlier is very true. April Fool's Day is just little, little pranks that cheer people up. If they've been tricked, it's like, Oh, good one there. But I remember my school friends, they went to the butcher's on the last day of school and they got a pig's head and they put it in the librarian's drawer.

Harry:
Oh, the librarian's drawer.

Charlie:
Because for years, some of my friends had had a rivalry with her.

Harry:
Oh, no. Pursuing a vendetta.

Charlie:
Exactly.

Harry:
That's. That's horrible.

Charlie:
Isn't it?

Harry:
That's really vicious. Violent crime. Poor fucking liber- librarian. That's just the kind of person you'd pick on, isn't it, as a kid.

Charlie:
Yeah.

Harry:
A librarian?

Charlie:
Yeah. If you are a librarian, watch out when you open the next drawer. And just, you know, try not to, try not to be too annoying to students because they are immature and they get carried away with it.

Harry:
Yeah. Especially not if there's a, there's a butcher's round the corner.

Charlie:
Exactly.

Harry:
Be careful. You might not find a book in that drawer. But to be fair, that should be on the shelf.

Charlie:
But, yeah. Thank you very much, Harry.

Harry:
You're welcome. Nice to, nice to be on there.

Charlie:
And thank you very much for coming down to- to my end.

Harry:
Yeah, it's been nice. Always nice coming down to your end.

Charlie:
Harry lives up in Bedford. I live in Guildford, or near Guildford, which is about two hour drive.

Harry:
Yeah, give or take.

Charlie:
Hour and a half. Going past London, around the M25.

Harry:
Yeah.

Charlie:
And you stayed for pretty much 24 hours.

Harry:
24 hours of sheer fun.

Charlie:
Yeah. You got to meet my family again.

Harry:
Yeah.

Charlie:
And the newborns, my nephews and, and my niece.

Harry:
Lovely boys. So funny to see them.

Charlie:
Yeah. Really nice having you to meet them for the first time for me as well. But yeah.

Harry:
Yeah.

Charlie:
Thank you very much, guys. I hope you enjoyed that. And yeah, if you want to join The Premium podcast to enjoy the learning resources around that, then fill your boots. Thank you very much, Harry.

Harry:
Cheers!

Charlie:
Bye bye!

Meet today's guest

Harry

Charlie & Harry are co-founders of Real English With Real Teachers YouTube Channel

Harry has been teaching English as a foreign language for over six years, both in language academies and privately online. After graduating in Psychology, Harry took a trip to South East Asia where he discovered a passion for teaching and languages.

Harry currently resides in Bedford, UK, where he teaches online and hosts residential English courses
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