My Northern mate once asked me ‘What’s it like living in London?’. My answer was ‘It’s bloody great, but the cost of a pint is eye watering’. However, there is so much more to London than fun times and £5 ales, The question made me realise that I had never managed to step back and truly sum up what being ‘A Londoner’ entails. Then, yesterday morning, I had a sudden moment of realization. Like Archimedes starkers in his bathtub, my revelation was just as unusual. Picture the scene- I was prancing around in front of a full-length mirror, hollering ‘I’VE GOT THE LONDON LOOK’. My attire consisted of pyjamas grubbier than UKIP’s policies, scuffed Chelsea boots, and yesterday’s make-up under my eyes. However, my moment of chaotic euphoria was brought to a halt when I realized I was treading cat sh*t into the (once) white carpet. Ew. This, in a contrived manner, sums up what London life is like for me. There is a lot of fun going on in front of you, and you can keep indulging in it, but eventually you will have to pause to manage the messy bits. London has everything you could possibly want to do, and every kind of person to do it with. I’ve been to secret gigs with punks, watched Caitlin Moran fight for feminism and danced my pants off with the Rastas of Peckham, but eventually the London grind will snap at your heels. The snapping might come in the guise of an empty wallet. Getting from A to B on the underground can break your bank and unemployment rates continue to rise faster in London than anywhere else in the country. Or it might be the rare horrible experience that shakes you. I’ve been lucky enough to avoid any threatening situation, but, as with all cities, they do happen. However, if you can survive hiccups like these you are guaranteed the time of your life. If London has taught me one thing, it’s how to survive the most bizarre situation. I’ve met the most amazing people in London and shared experiences we wouldn’t stumble upon anywhere else. So when the sh*t starts spreading, take a step back, sort it out, then keep on prancing.
By Bella Spencer