First day in London


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London is colder than I had even imagined.Wrapped in my four layers of new clothing that I had tested at home and had made me sweat on that 26 degree day that now seems like an age ago, dressed in those same clothes today I was shivering. Wondering where in my luggage I put my beanie and Gloves (the ones that on my packing list had a little question mark next to them, as if I was wondering if they were really necessary). Now I am grateful for my decision to bring them, or at least I will be when I unpack and find them.

On the train from Heathrow to Kings Cross I listened to The Wombats on my iPod. Back home the grungy songs that they sing about London always seemed so much from the heart if a touch romatic, but now confronted by the London (side of the rail tracks) suburbia, they seem to be singing about some place they have never been. About an image of themselves that they wanted to portray but those rows of identical pebble-crete houses with brown sludge and a leafless tree for a garden just said “yeah right, they know nothing of us”. Which makes me sad because I really like The Wombats and I dont want to think of them as fakes. Maybe I’ll try them again tomorrow in the city centre and see if that makes more sense.

At the hostel I checked in, took several tries on different floors to find my room, sat down on the bed and burst into tears. I controlled them before they became sobs and assessed what was happening. This was the first time I was able to stop and be totally by myself since I left everybody 1? 2? days ago. I needed a plan to keep busy to keep my mind off it, off being away. After clinging to the scarf gifted to me by Anna as though it was a little piece of every person that I was missing, I set myself a timetable for the rest of the day which allowed me only to shed tears at bed time. (Crying myself to sleep? I’m not looking for pity here, just have to acknowledge my feelings somehow). I took a shower, it’s one of those wonderful ones that have a button that dispenses water on you for 10 seconds (I counted) when you press it. Oh, and the window was open so it was freezing cold in between the bursts of water, and the shower was concrete and the whole bathroom was wet, but apart from all of this I feel a new person after that shower and now my cup of soup and digestive biscuits are making life better by the bite. My cold symptoms launched into full blown cold on the plane (sorry everyone on that flight with me, you will probably be sick on your holiday now) s I’m also sipping Lemsip and hoping this subsides before I’m supposed to be cooking for 40 people.

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