Chronicles of one girl's journey to London - from conception to eventual migration.

Thursday, November 25, 2010


I have been very lucky in London so far. As one friend put it, "You've really landed on your feet!" I have very few complaints other than the fact that my nose is always either blocked or running. Depends on the time of day really. My theory is the air is laced with coccaine.

Anyway . . . one of the things I got luckiest with is my house and the 6 people I share it with.

When I first moved in, it wasn't so nice. But we've cleared out the riff-raff (and also one lovely, lovey couple) and we are left with . . .

Ben - the token Aussie. He's an accountant. He's on the same visa as me. He moved in 2 weeks after I did. He's awesome!

Glen - the charming Irishman. Also an accountant. He's lived in the house just about a year now. He's a lady's man and a great friend.

Owen - the first Englishman in the house. He works in finance as well, but I couldn't tell you what he does . . . He cooks like a Master and has a fantastic singing voice!

Steve - the other Englishman and our most recent addition. He's our pub fiend and is in events marketing.

Ellen - from Preston, she's a Neuroscience PhD student. She's really sweet, but I have a hard time understanding her accent sometimes hehe.

Emma - a Welsh girl, she has a fantastic set of movies to choose from and is everything I thought British girls would be!

So, there's the rundown of my flatmates in London. Certainly very different from living with family but I love it!

Saturday, November 13, 2010


I wake up - sometimes late - and wash my face, I get dressed, go to work, pretend I am busier than I really am, idly chatter with my colleagues but always with a slight guard up, go home, make dinner, idly chat to my flatmates (this time with no guard up) and then fall asleep under a thick duvet. Somewhere in that routine, I think about my family, my boyfriend, my grocery list. Where am I?

It could be anywhere. But then, one Friday evening I am at a bar in the City, near Bank and I walk out onto the street with Ben and Glen. Right in front of us is the Royal Exchange. And then I know . . . whatever it is I'm doing, I am doing under a London sky. 

It never gets old for me.

Monday, November 8, 2010


Someday I'm going to look back on this London experience and marvel at the ways it's changed my life. Some days, though, I wake up ungrateful and cranky. Today is one of those days. Today, with the skies heavy and grey, I don't want to socialize. I don't want to be nice to anyone and I don't want to make pleasant chitchat.
I want to put on a pair of thick, warm PJs and stay in bed until noon. I want someone to pamper me and be nice to me without wanting anything in return. I want to boss someone around and be snide and bitch and gossip and eat chocolate and get the perfect head massage. I want my nose to stop running. I want a raise for no reason at all. I want the perfect cuddle followed by an endless back-scratch. I want someone to cook me dinner the way I want it. I want to be a big baby.

Monday, November 1, 2010


2 days after we bid adieu to lovely Dennis (whose tale can be followed here), my mommy arrived in London! I have spent the last 5 months missing her like crazy and I was so excited to finally see her. Qas and I picked her up at Heathrow on Friday morning. I ran to her the minute I saw her; this little woman with two very large suitcases! One was mine! The minute I got home, I went through all the clothes and shoes I had missed these last few months. Reunited at last! 
I had been very nervous about my mother meeting Qas. Over the last year, I had not given her the best impression of him. But when they met, everything was fine. In fact, by the end of the week, she would be defending him if I said something rude to him (always in a loving, joking way of course!)
Despite jet-lag (hers) and the sudden onslaught of a bad cold (mine), we headed to Birmingham the next day to meet Zab who was kind enough to drive down from Blackburn. This meeting went splendidly as expected and we even had the added bonus of Jabir joining us for an hour or so at the end of the day.

They also met a lovely bull.
Unfortunately, I had to work the rest of the week so she entertained herself. One night,I came home to a new rug, laptop table and groceries. Typical Mommy . . . no matter what age, no matter where you go in the world and how well you've set your own life up, your mother will always find a way to leave her mark. It is what makes them your Mum.
The highlight of our week was definitely afternoon tea at the Royal Garden Hotel. Cup after cup of delicious tea with sandwiches and scones and pastries is the best way to spend a Friday afternoon! We followed that with our first trip to Harrod's!

Dear God, those cakes!

And then, Saturday morning rolled around and Mommy left to go back to Toronto and her life and leave me to building mine. But she has definitely left me much stronger and capable. She reminded me why I was able to do this in the first place, and she has given me renewed hope in myself. I feel less lonely and I feel less afraid. I feel less stressed and I feel more inspired. That, dear readers, is what makes Neena Taylor my Mum.