Friday, 26 September 2008


I was meant to be half a world away by now.

I would have been soaking up some New Zealand springtime before packing up and leaving again.

But I changed my mind.

Some of you may know that somehow I managed to bag an all-expenses paid stint at a university in Japan. Kick-off: October 2008. Next week. 18 months of research in a topic of my choosing.

But Japan is a very hard place to live. And when it came to the crunch, the thought of going back there freaked me out a little. Besides, I'm in love. With a wonderful city called London.

I feared I would regret giving up the opportunity. Some people would kill for it. But since I finally made up my mind, I have never once looked back. Everyday I wake up in the knowledge that I have made the right decision. Picked the right path.

London: it has been magnificent. And if you are ok with it, I'd like to stay please. What was meant to be a brief affair has turned into a proper long-term relationship. I love your crisp autumn mornings where the low hanging sun bounces off Clapham Common; your incredibly talented collection of buskers; your heaving pubs on a Friday lunch for a fish finger sandwich and a pint of Strongbow; your quirky and slightly throaty laugh and roguish, scruffy nature.

It is nice to finally feel roots grow from my feet and have no more moves tattooed in my future.

Thanks London. It's so nice to call you home.

Saturday, 13 September 2008

Summer's ugly stepsister

Unfortunately for every summer, there must be an autumn. Even for a summer like this year's one, which felt pretty much like autumn anyway.

Summer is always going to be one tough act to follow. What can autumn offer that summer didn't?

Crisp sunny mornings; walks to and from the tube in half-light. Colourful death dropping from deciduous trees. Promise of short days and wintry nights.

Frantic searchings for matching gloves on frosty mornings; Tuesday evenings in with a bottle of cheap red and a good friend. An excuse to lie in for an extra hour on a rainy Sunday morning.

Steaming bowls of soup in cheap Clapham cafe. Beers on a Saturday afternoon on a couch at the Windmill.

Fortunately for every autumn, you know that a spring is sleeping somewhere in the not too distant future.