Covent Garden market
I’ve spent the last few weeks living a crazy london tourist life, exploring places like Soho, Covent garden and Chinatown. In between attending job and recruiter interviews, I’ve had the best macaroons of my life at Ladurée (somewhere I’ve dreamt of going for a long time!) and the best pasta at Jamie Oliver’s Italian restaurant. I visited St Paul’s Cathedral where we admired and awed at the intricate glass murals, hand painted ceilings and oak carved alters, descended into the crypts and climbed over 500 steps to the top of the duomo. I was outside the Lindo Wing at St Mary’s hospital when Kate and Will presented Princess Charlotte to the world amongst the crowds of well wishers. I was offered three jobs in one day and had a tricky 24 hours trying to choose the best one. And yesterday I explored the food stalls in the Streets of Spain market along the South Bank, eating the best crepe of my life (error: that’s not Spanish food!!).
But tomorrow I start my new job. Back to the ‘real world’ with a 9-5 job (although here it’s more like 9.30-7pm!). So today I’m off on an adventure. I (temporarily) leave Maidenhead feeling like a kid going to camp, with my backpack full of everything I’ll need for the next few days. I’m off to stay in a very oldy-worldy backpackers in a part of London I haven’t yet visited, sharing a dorm room with 10 other females. I’m not sure if I’ll like it, how I’ll feel about the shared bathroom facilities or if I’ll get a good nights sleep in a room that has no curfew, but I’m in London, and where better to go on such an adventure. I’ll admit, the night before starting my new job probably isn’t the best idea, but with the cost and duration of travel from Maidenhead being more than the cost of staying in a hostel, I thought I have nothing to lose.
I’ll admit, I had a bit of a breakdown this morning when faced (yet again) with the challenge of trying to find a flat. What can look amazing in a photo can be damp, moldy and in a very dodgy area. What sounds like a cool area can in fact be run down, deserted and definitely not safe for a young girl to be walking home along at night. And what is in a perfect location, clean room and close to the tube can be occupied with the weirdest, most unsociable people who are just living there for convenience.
I thought I wouldn’t be so picky about where I would live. I’m aware that it won’t be as nice as home, that I’ll be living the ‘flat life’ in a somewhat small and older flat, but it’s harder than I thought to find somewhere. I’m not after the perfect place but I’m aware that where I’m living could make or break my experiences here, so I want to wait for the right place. But waiting can take a while, especially when most places advertise weeks in advance. I want the right balance between nice people, clean place and good location close to a tube. It doesn’t help when I found a place where I thought I’d be really happy only to have my following emails ignored and not be contacted again by the girls, even to say it was a no!
In addition, most flats want viewings in the evenings and when living two hours away this is really limited. So I’ve moved into the central city temporarily to help with viewing places in the evenings and getting to work easier. Like I said, cost of the hostel is balanced out with transport to maidenhead so it’s a no brainer really.
So here I go, off to do something way out of my comfort zone, with people I don’t know, in an area I haven’t yet visited.
Wish me luck!