Sunday, February 18, 2007

more apologies

view on my street-in snow

Since arriving in London, I have not written very much, not because of lack of inspiration, the city buzzes with energy and it feels like every day I discover something new; about the place; myself; or both.

I like the adventure and the knowledge quest this city has become to me. It feels like I am always finding something new, looking at the same things but each day seeing the light reflect things another way and things feel like they are becoming clearer every second I am here. Pangs of joy readily escape when I discover a new short cut, or simply how things meet up together… the other day I discovered china town hiding just behind Soho.

The feelings of suffocation I felt I suffered seem to have evaporated and I whilst I am still battling the mundane in many ways it is just so much more exciting here... for the moment.

My job is going well but has been a massive adjustment. I have discovered I know nothing about the market or my clients and the processes at my office feel so anti user that my first few weeks have been hard. Couple this with the fact that most brits seem to be more reserved and just not Australian… it has been an exciting but challenging time.

The more time I spend at the office the more I like it, I am beginning to feel apart of the team slowly but things are so different in my office than they were in Sydney that I have struggled at times. Put simply- I loved NC, I loved going to work and laughing till I cried almost everyday and realizing that this won’t ever happen here has been hard.

On the up side, I have spent my weekends doing what I love best- anyone who has ever traveled with me knows about my propensity for a great walk. Today I strolled up to Primrose Hill which gives one a stunning view of the entire city… the horizon is dotted with more landmarks in one vista than you could think possible, the eye, St Pauls, the zoo, Regents Park and Kings Cross all play in the same skyline.

Afterwards, I wandered around colourful streets with buildings in varying pastel shades, noting provadores, fromagires and bakeries where I will spend my pounds... when I have more of them. Before I knew it I was in Camden- the home of the punk, tartan and black fishnets replaced the Georgian mansions and you could be forgiven for thinking you had stepped back in time. Camden is electric, narrow streets teaming with the curious, the bargain hunter, the tourist and the locals all wandering together like sardines on a Sunday afternoon.

Later I strolled down to Oxford Circus and finally and to my beloved Marylebone High Street- a gorgeous street filled with expensive boutiques with pretty window displays you could get lost in. I stopped in my new favourite book shop (Daunts Books) ad the recommendation of my cousin and fell in love with the arched windows and old fashioned ladders on wheels. Next stop, the Oxfam book store where I overloaded myself with Jane Austen (something’s never change- when you assumed I had read them all… twice), Capote, Kerourac and JD Salinger et al.

There is something I love about being surrounded by books, it feels like surrounding yourself with friends- shelves loaded with people you will soon love, loathe or leave. Shelves loaded with people you loved and lost, characters you will remember years after they came into your world- so much like life. I guess that explains why I forced my dad to except 10 boxes full of them, ready to be loved again on my return.

On my way home, I stopped at Waitrose a posh supermarket and picked up some ingredients for my gourmet hot beef salad. It was delicious.

My house is fantastic, a great relief. My flat mates are unreal and it does feel like a home, somewhere I know I am going to be happy in. My old friend James Rigney is staying with me (we went to uni together) and he remarked that is very similar to my old digs at Abercrombie street- which is a fair comparison and probably explains why I loved it the second I saw it- it is kinda run down, the floors are not quite level but it is charming even though the walls are in need of a paint- and the furniture could have been purchased at the Tempe tip.

My room has become an oasis- it measures about 8 meters by 5 meters- is bathed in light and overlooks a retro electrical company. With mint green walls and one that is a slightly odd shade of federation green that despite my initial revulsion I have learned to like. Whilst furnished out of an Ikea catalogue, it has a certain charm generated by the odd Asian souvenir I lugged on my travels. The house is situated on the same street as one of London highest towers- it is well and truly in the middle of everything and yet in still feels like a village.

My street is littered with cafes, shoe repairers an old launderette, 3 quaint pubs and it is within spitting distance of Regents Park. I also live in the shadow of greatness and my suburb Fitzrovia was once home to George Orwell, Virgina Wolf and George Bernard Shaw.

Yesterday, I did something terribly spontaneous but great. I went to the travel agent to book some holidays for Easter and a long weekend in May and despite going in there with the intention of going to Egypt, morocco, Tunisia, Russia, or Greece- I am now going to Turkey and Iceland… random but exiting, I am still comprehending the fact I can travel and still work… anyone with tips on Iceland please pass them on!

It is good to be alive. Well, that’s about it from me- Hope you are well, my real home is in my thoughts.