Saturday, 9 April 2011

New beginnings.

I keep thinking over how different my life will be this summer when I move to London. Whilst I currently live in a city, I live in a very small one at that, the pace of life is spectacularly different and the more I am realising the expectations are different.

Don't get me wrong, on gorgeous sunny days like today, Plymouth is the place to be.

Plymouth Hoe
But for the other 360 days of the year, it returns to it's usual guise of grey apathy and indifference. People here are generally happy with their lot in life, never aspiring to anything more and even if they do, they don't have the opportunities to progress so end up settling down quietly. It's something I've always known about Plymouth, and it's only been recently that I've been able to put my finger on what it is that makes me start crawling up the walls and browsing for cheap train tickets to London. And whilst that is obviously fine for some (and who I am to judge how others choose to live their life), it's not something I ever want to resign myself to. Hence why, on the 2nd of July this year (it's not a set date yet in anyway other than in my head), I'm moving to London.

Having been to London a few times recently for interviews and to visit friends or hit the shops, I'm now realising just how different things are:

The pace of life - whilst some people hate how fast paced and anxious London seems, I love it. People rush because they have somewhere to go, something better to be doing, someone they are desperate to see and it is that which epitomises my love for the city. Down here, if you saw a bus just closing the doors but there was another one in two minutes, no-one would even break out into a jog. Life is precious people, we should be fighting to enjoy and make the best of every second, and I wish people would realise that

The advert my friends talked about
(from the H&M website, I have no
rights to this image).
The style - In Plymouth, you are either a 'chav', an 'emo', a 'student' or a grown up. Which ever group you are in dictates the fashion you wear and the places you hang out. Everyone looks the same, no-one dares break the mould and when you do, you're mocked even for donning a bright lipstick. People look at fashion models and the people on the H&M adverts and question "who would wear that?" and state "well you can't wear that every day" or "no-one can work in heels like that". Yet in London, people wear what they want. There are no groups or cliques of fashion and trends, you can never feel too over-dressed or like you've made too much effort. And whilst this is a rather superficial observation, in some ways it isn't. In London, you fit in because you are one in 6 million, not because of the clothes you wear. And whilst it undoubtedly means I will spend my entire disposable income on clothes and shoes in my first few months, I hope it is as invigorating as it seems.

The things to do - In Plymouth, if it's raining, you either go: bowling, swimming, to the cinema, shopping or ice skating. If it's sunny, you go to: the Hoe, the Barbican or the beach. That is literally it. You struggle to think of new things to do after only a month-or-so simply because there is nothing new to think of, nothing new to do. When I move to London, I'm going to make a pact with myself - I will not go to the same place twice in my first year. Because I can, because I want to experience new things, meet new people, eat new foods and find new things that I didn't even know existed..

The food - This links to my pledge from the last point, because there is so much more to experience than what I can find here. On browsing the yellow pages, you find only 8 different cuisines listed, and one of those is 'British', and I want more. On visiting Brick Lane market with a friend last summer, the food hall there gave me more choice than I'd ever had before, and that was one small hall in one small part of London. I want to eat Ethiopian food, snack on Vietnamese products and guzzle down the tastes of Turkey, I want to try new vegetables, see new ways of cooking and, above all, take them home with me. Whilst I do love my 'Homepride' pasta bakes, there is more to food than that.

Travel opportunities - I want to go on the Eurostar and go to Paris! I want to fly away for the weekend to Prague, to Amsterdam, to Rome, to Madrid... and I want to do it all without a 4 hour trip to the airport either side of the trip.

Can you tell I'm getting rather excited about moving to London? I think I'm even more excited because I'm doing it on my own, not with a boyfriend, not even with a friend and although I will know people in London, I'm far enough away that what I do with my time is completely within my own control. Sounds amazing, I can only hope it lives up to my expectations, though seeing as life is what you make it, I'm sure it will.


Sy's Prints said...

Fantastic post! I'm staying in Ipswich at the moment and although its really nice when the sun comes out and you go down to the docks, I've not found much else to do. Thats the great thing about London, there lots of adventures to be had and new things to do! :-) xx

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