London and Me

"When a man tires of London, he tires of life"
Samuel Johnson

This quote has always intrigued me. As someone who has a very on-off relationship with London, I thought it would be interesting to write about it, even for me to be honest. 

Growing up, going to London was always such an exciting adventure, getting the boat, the train and then spending a day whizzing round the sights. I was always terrified of the Tube, but when I used it everyday for the Olympics I got used to it. 

I moved to London when I had just turned 19 for University. I say I moved to London, but I lived in Zone 6, studied in Zone 4 and went into Central maybe every other week. But it was a stepping stone! I lived in a lovely flat with one other lad and it was all jolly.

I guess it was at this point I began to feel quite lonely to be honest, I didn't really have any other friends that were in London and ended up going exploring/watching TV shows by myself. I guess London at this point lost it's sparkle for me. It became somewhere that I had to go back to, waving my Mum and Jack off on the boat left me in tears each time, I guess what I'm saying is I wasn't happy. It lost the magic and excitement that I saw on peoples faces when they came to visit me, the tourist attractions were like walking through a closet of bad memories, and it stayed like this for the rest of uni to be honest.

For my second and third year I lived in a private halls, for all different Unis in Tooting. Whilst here I met lots of new people, spent less time (but still a fair amount) in bed and had an actual existing social life. I took other people to see TV shows, went on too many nights out and spent too much money in Wilkos which fortunately (unfortunately for my poor old bank balance) was just round the corner. I did feel so much happier here than before, but this is where I really started realising how expensive London is.

This was taken the day I moved out of London, Tooting, 10th June 2015 aka the best day ever. I paid £640 a month to live in this, share a kitchen with fifteen other people, and share my room with a host of creatures including mice and silverfish. This was all my student loan really, and I had to take a zero hour contract with a waitressing agency in order to ya know, eat.

I really don't think London is the best place to go to University. There's not campus type things, the "SU" was about a 45 minute journey from my halls by Tube so it never worked out as cheap as just popping across the campus. I visited my friends Uni in Keele as well as my brother in Chichester and was always so jealous of the community at SU's and stuff. As I said above also, everything is super expensive in London, paying £100+ a month to travel to work and Uni, the more expensive rent and once I went out to a bar and got charged £14.40 for a SINGLE vodka and cranberry?! whaaaaaat. 

So now I'm approaching the time where I'm applying for jobs to go back to London. To be perfectly honest, I'm not that emphatic. I'm still absolutely terrified of mice. I went there last week and one ran over my foot, thought I was going to die. I have a seven year old brother at home, and I've just got used to being able to spend a lot of time with him. Also the thought of missing out or not being at home when I need to be worries me to my core. 

But alas, it's something I have to do, all the jobs I need are based in London, so I just need to man up really. I am looking at living in Zone 5/6 as it's going to be nicer, more countryside-y, cheaper and all round less likely to have mice. 

But after visiting London most weeks for the past month or so, I've slowly started coming round to the idea again. It is good with the easy travel, lots of people to meet and so many exciting opportunities every day! 

I guess as with every place in the whole entire world, there are pros and cons. I didn't want to put anybody off London with this post just wanted to talk abawt my own experience, innit.

Have you ever lived in London? Would you?


  1. This was such an interesting post to read. I've never lived in London, I grew up in the countryside! But I've always wanted to move there after I graduate. I can see how a bad experience could colour your view of London but there's so much it has to offer that I think you could definitely learn to love it again! My boyfriend lived in Frankfurt before I did and hated it, had a crap house with horrible flatmates etc. but he said the other day how much he loves Frankfurt now, and it's probably cause I've made him see it differently by dragging him out in the evenings and weekends to explore and go to cafes and bars and do all the touristy things! I hope everything works out for you :)

    Hannah xx

    1. I think that's exactly my problem! I do keep going back for jobs and friends etc and everytime I go up I see it a bit better (except when a mouse ran over my foot VOM VOM VOM) and the thought of going back grows on me. I think it's because I grew up in countryside that it makes it even harder. I just need new people to take me round and make it good for me again!

      Thank you :)