Thursday, September 8, 2011

Fair London

I am currently perched on a clean corner of my bed, in the midst of the fifty-seventh clean out of my room in about two months. The Velvet Underground have provided the soundtrack.

Since London is RAPIDLY approaching, I am getting rid of EVERYTHING that I physically cannot take with me. I have two bags of clothes to hopefully get some money for with Siopaella in Temple Bar, a bag for a charity shop and a bag of work clothes that Luke's sister will be availing of. Scarves, jumpers, bags, shoes, dresses and accessories are all bundled up, ready to be given to new homes and I am left with those which I believe will give me street cred in one of the most stylish cities in the world.

If you haven't been to London, you are missing out. Everyone is SO interesting looking. Whether they are the happy, smiley cash clerks in Whole Foods Market (where Luke and I got delicious watermelon) or the person sitting beside you on the Tube, everyone is so different that I cannot but help slightly staring at them. One thing that I have been told by countless people who have learnt that I am moving to London is that it is a "very unfriendly place". I mean I can count nearly ten people who have told me this. But I have now set myself the task of making note of every lovely thing I have born witness to in London.

 During our 4 day trip there last week, Luke and I met nothing but genuinely friendly people like the lovely ladies who asked us did we need directions after serving us in Harrods. I've never had that before; someone getting that, by the look of me, I was a tourist and only for Luke, I probably would have asked her for some directions! Then in the Metro on the Tube I found an article where people are compiling the compassionate things that they have witnessed on the Tube and making them into an art project "celebrating the 'value' of kindness". Some include strangers comforting a heartbroken woman and telling her that "every storm passes". Another is of a man's mobile phone being saved by a stranger who noticed he had left it behind him and so met him at the next station stop. You can see the collection here .

Another story from our trip was a man carrying a woman's suitcase up a flight of stairs in Gatwick airport when he noticed her struggling. At the top, he then ran off to get a train and she shouted after him "I owe you a pint!". So, unfriendly it most certainly is not. I cannot wait to discover this city and make my little mark on it along with the millions of others who live there. Having once been an empire, it is so beautiful in parts, the buildings dating back centuries. One of the most amazing monuments I have ever seen is the Albert Memorial directly opposite the Royal Albert Hall. It is awe inspiring.                       Albert

I simply LOVE Portobello Road for all of the stalls and quirky shops that line it and those that run them. I feel like I Angela Lansbury is beside me, hunting down the missing back of a magic book. I also get to pop into the Hummingbird Bakery for a brownie and tea.

I took some better pictures this time and on our way home, marvelled at the cameras in duty free. I plan on treating myself to a deadly camera once I get enough saved. And finally find a place to live. If anyone knows anyone else seeking housemates, I will forward you the ad Luke and I have on three sites. Le sigh.
 Stressful, but I'm certain it will be worth it for the land of Love Actually, Harry Potter and soon, Luke and Laura.

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