Friday, 23 October 2015

WHAT LONDON TAUGHT ME


I come from the smallest little town in Spain, like a really really really tiny town. Moving to such a big city like London was a big deal for me. Suddenly, I didn't know the people I saw in the streets - I didn't even know my own neighbours! -, there were so many events going on around me, so many new things to experience. I must admit it was a bit overwhelming at first, but I've survived and I'm still here. This amazing city has taught me quite a few things, despite the fact that I've only been here for a bit more than two years. 

1. Tourists are annoying. I was once a tourist in London and I am still a tourist every time I travel, but some tourists can be pretty annoying. To begin with, STAND ON THE RIGHT, there are signs everywhere - it's not that hard. Also, please stop walking so slowly when you're in the middle of a busy road. 

2. The tube is the best and worst thing you'll ever encounter. On one hand, it is a magical thing that takes you wherever you want to go in a reasonable amount of time. On the other hand, it is so expensive I might as well just take an uber and avoid running into creepy people whilst having no signal on my phone. 

3. A £10 burger is cheap and you shouldn't complain. Spain is a relatively cheap country compared to London and the exchange rate makes it even cheaper. When I first came here I was a bit shocked by some prices. Eating out for less than £10 is literally impossible -unless you go to MacDonald's - and don't be surprised when they charge you £15 for a drink. 

4. Living in a nice apartment is a luxury you shouldn't take for granted. Whilst I don't live in a palace back at home, I do have quite a nice house with a decent-sized bedroom, bathroom, living room, and kitchen. If you want something like that in Central London, you could easily pay £300 per week plus bills. Is it outrageous? Yes, it is. 

5. Weekends were made for brunch. I would be lying if I said that brunch isn't the main thing I get excited about every time I come back to London.  Unless it is Madrid or Barcelona, most places in Spain haven't quite realized how freaking amazing brunch is so it's still not a thing there. Coming back to London means I could literally go to brunch every single day to a different place, that is, if my bank account allowed me to. 

6. It is possible to have fun for free. London is indeed one of the most expensive cities I've ver been to. However, it offer plenty of stuff to do for free. To begin with, all the museums here have free entry. There are also many nice parks that are absolutely lovely during autumn and spring, there are many places with stunning views of the city and, let's be honest, just walking down Regent Street salivating over the MK bags and Burberry coats is fun.

7. People are rude. I feel like this is something that happens mainly in big cities like London. I don't exactly know why, though. Could be the lack of sun (many English people are actually OBSESSED with the sun), the constant stress of the city or maybe the fact that people are alienated from each other. Back at home, I know/know of most people in my town so I don't want to be rude to them, but because here you'll probably never see that person ever again, you don't give a shit about what you say/do.
8. You do you. Do whatever you want, wear whatever you want. This is what London is for.  There are so many different types of people with so many different backgrounds and lives that it is impossible to 'fit in'. 

9. Be active. It is really easy to stay at home in bed watching movies and doing nothing. Whilst I do enjoy doing that every once in a while, London is a city with so many opportunities that I would be stupid if I didn't take advantage of them. So go out and experience new things.

10. There's no place like home. I love London, I really do, but home will always be home. Going back means not having to be alert 24/7, not having to remember to do your laundry or to pay the bills and getting to eat nice homemade food every day. It's nice being able to relax for a while and change this fast-paced city for a small quiet town.



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