Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Weekend in London

AOG, London

I flew into London last Saturday and I have spent a couple of days here now. I fly back in a few hours. I am at odds as to how best explain what I have felt in London this time around. It was my sister's birthday last Tuesday and we all met for gifts & dinner on Sunday. Although short, it was very enjoyable. As per usual, the Texas Embassy proved very welcoming.

I had a lovely time all around and the next day, Monday, the Gods of good weather shone on London like they tend to do once in a blue moon. It was a glorious day, as the locals like to say. Sunny, not warm, but, unfortunately, laden with tree pollen all over the place. Juan and I spent most of the day in Notting Hill and walking around Portobello Road.

We dropped in on a few shops and then had lunch around 3 pm in a... espèce de Bistrot off Portobello Road which didn't serve beer, and didn't have public toilets. Alas, the food was very good.

We then took the number 23 bus which kept passing by all during our lunch incessantly. 45 minutes later, we were in Soho. We got tickets to see Avenue Q (soon to be turned into a post!). Then we visited HMV, KFC and took a taxi home. It was getting late.

Now, in retrospect, I admit that being in London was mostly a good experience. Was I homesick? No, not really. Was it good to be back? Not necessarily, but I admit that it was good to be here. Does that make sense? I don't know. But that is how I felt all throughout this weekend.

I think, perhaps, I am beginning to see London as a weekend destination, and not as ex home. I did ask Juan (perhaps foolishly) if he would like to live in London. A questioning "No?", was the answer. I'm not sure why I asked. I, perhaps, unconsciously, toyed with the idea of going back, but I think this is because not a whole lot is going on in Spain that I like right now- though that is not to say all is bad, all is, well, moving along slowly and I am feeling a bit lost sometimes.

It has been over a year since I moved there, and perhaps now it is starting to sink in. Perhaps not. Not sure yet. I have been a bit down concerning my employment future there. And suddenly, I remembered that I used to work in the UK, and got a strange feeling of security from that.

Isn't it amazing how the mind will selectively play with our memories and desires, mixing both to produce a prerequisite (and always nicely nostalgic) feeling? I walked around London with a nice feeling all day Monday. And then today I have managed to remember a few (not all) of the reasons why I left London in the first place. And a joke I heard in Spain a while back came to mind.


A group of dead people are given a tour of Hell whilst they are in Purgatory. They see people having fun, loads of sinning going on, sunny beaches, in short, it looks like a blast. When their time in Purgatory is over, they all ask to be sent to Hell. Once there, they are shackled, sent into the fire of the bottomless pit, roasted alive, they feel pain, sorrow, etc. After a while, one of them asks an orderly demon about what is happening. "It all looked like such fun! What is going on?" The demon replied, "Well, of course, you realise that holidays are one thing, and inmigration quite another!".

Indeed. I think these last couple of days I forgot this. Funny that.

No comments: