The International Steam Pages


Tua Pek Kong Rules, the Mitcheldean Garden 2019

This is the 2019 index of the pages describing our very dull life in the UK since arriving in 2011. Having negotiated the maze of regulations designed to frustrate those wanting to bring a non-EU spouse into the UK, Yuehong has been the proud owner of a UK passport since late 2014 which means we can have a near perfect balance of the best 8 months of the year in the UK and the best 4 months of the year in Penang. We now hire a car in Penang, while in the UK public transport and weekend car hires having just sufficed for 7 years, we have now put our own 4 wheels on the driveway which allows us more flexibility to explore our surrounding countryside and better enjoy our visits to steam fairs.

Click here for the main 'Life in the UK' index page.


For most people in the UK the prospect of taking on a property built up 33 steps on a 30 degree slope would be a nightmare. For us, it's proved both a challenge and a delight. This is our ninth summer (2019) and like all the others it will no doubt prove to be completely different from those that went before. I would like to think that the garden achieved a degree of maturity in 2017, acknowledged by our being invited to be part of the Open Gardens weekend in June. 2018 saw me celebrating a big birthday although I have yet to fill the need to cut back on some of the more physical aspects of gardening. .

And as for Tua Pek Kong, if the name means nothing to you then he's an old friend from our other life in Penang.

Thanks for the Weather...
March 2019
The Wall Part 1
April 2019
The Wall Part 2
May 2019
The Wall Part 3
June 2019
Arrival of the Queen of Sheba
June 2019
Garfield, Wilbur and Friends
July 2019
September Song
September 2019
Wet, Wetter, Wettest
October 2019

Our garden history 2011-18

Welcome Tua Pek Kong.

Summer 2018

Oh, to be in England

Summer 2017

Our Cup Runneth Over

Summer 2016

The Best Garden in Mitcheldean?

Summer 2015

The Best Garden in Mitcheldean?

Summer 2014

How does Your Garden Grow?

Summer 2013

Holding back the deluge

Summer 2012

Getting started:

Summer 2011


Rob and Yuehong Dickinson

Email: webmaster@internationalsteam.co.uk