I arrived London wearing a dress, thinking it was summer. Well technically it is, only it is quite chilly and alas my dress failed me. I found a store as quickly as I could and purchased a few odds and ends to keep me warm. I knew there was a reason I seemed to gravitate more towards countries in the Mediterranean. Last night, I was in a really light mood, and my sister and I were having a laugh and being silly. We were checking off a few reasons why we
may or may never come back to London (Heathrow and Victoria Coach station are excluded) and the UK generally really.
1. One ride on the tube costs more than it costs me to fuel my car for a week. It is an expensive place, and the pound is strong isn’t it?
2. There are cameras everywhere. No peeing in the street. Or is there??
3. Oxford street has too many people on it, it feels like a scene from the Apocalypse.
4. I can never find my way around the city and end up walking miles and miles until my bones creak (hey I have improved my Map reading skills).
5. There is too much bread eaten here; everything is wrapped in bread. Nothing is spicy.
6. For some reason, people always step on my feet in the underground rush and nobody ever says sorry.
7. The folks at some local radio station are very happy to talk about all the mugging and murdering going on in London (am not joking, I have to find the name, not sure why this reception is constantly tuned to it). It’s pretty scary.
8. Too many homeless people, I wonder if there are programs to deal with the issues.
9. The city is incredibly diverse and I have heard more languages on the bus than in any other country
10. I can photograph anything and anybody, nobody cares really, nobody has attempted to take my camera and smash it.
11. Street food is amazing and costs only GBP5 for chinese, and indian and whatever else you fancy really.
12. There is a lot of culture, and a lot of effort has gone into preserving this.
13. People seem quite aware of the issues plaguing our world, lots of protests going on around the city. One could go to one protest per day. The police does not turn water on the protesters
14. The universities are great in
London and have an amazing array of books and research facilities.
15. Everyone back home gives you a list of stuff to buy for them without money, because they assume that you pick gold off the streets and buy stuff.
In all, this seems like a really great city for anyone interested in International Development, I have seen loads of offices from DFID, to VSO, to Save the Children, and met quite a few development people here. So much work is done in the field by these NGOs and their engine rooms are in this city.
I am off to take in a bit of culture today; Madam Tussaud’s, the London Eye, a show at the West End. Will put up pictures tomorrow. By the way; my photography course is yielding some excellent pictures (the pictures here are all mine) which I shall share soon enough.
Omne Bonum Veniat!