Journal #3

Originally posted on Blogger on 29 March 2015

Here’s the third of the required writing assignments Susquehanna University has everyone studying in London write.

Homesickness:

I never really suffered from homesickness. I missed things certainly, and I’m excited to see my family again, but I never suffered from it. Maybe it’s because I grew up travelling (whether to New York City or Italy), or maybe it’s something that doesn’t affect me. There were moments where I wanted to be home, but even then, it was more than I wanted one specific person, and if, in that moment, they had been in London, I would’ve been fine, so I’m not sure if that even counts. I do think all the travelling I’ve done – even if much of it was with my parents – did help. It helped me get over that initial shock faster. When I came here, I was so excited about being back in London after three years that I didn’t care about what I was leaving behind in the States. I didn’t feel sad or angry. I was happy, excited. I wanted to explore London and the UK and I felt like I was ready to do that.

Assimilate into British Culture:

Honestly, I’m not sure how I’ve done this. I’ve eaten some typical British food. Some of which I’ve liked and some of it I’ve taken one bite and sworn to never eat again. I’ve found out some out of the way places that are still beautiful, but tourists don’t even know they exist because they’re focused on things like Big Ben, St Paul’s Cathedral, the Tower of London, etc. I’ve also tried to go to different places than I did when I was here three years ago. I feel like I’ve come to know this city well, and I’m finally learning how the different pieces next to Regent’s are connected, and I’m leaving in a month.

Favourite Facets of British Culture:

Like I wrote about in my late post (see the post that was originally written on 24 February 2015), I’ve realised there’s a more relaxed way of life here. I’ve realised that I don’t need to spend every second of every day running around the city or the country. That I can take some days to relax and wander around one of the many parks or giving myself a lounge day in my room or my friend’s room with a group of people I think are awesome and Netflix or music or a YouTube video playing off someone’s laptop. As important as I think it is to explore the city and the culture, and get out, I also think it’s important to have days like this where you don’t have anything planned, and you have the freedom to go or stay in as you please.

Another part is the theatre. I grew up going to the theatre because of my maternal grandmother. I’ve become very passionate about it, and was involved in it in high school. I grew up going to musicals in New York City with her, and that’s fallen over into both times I’ve been to London. I know I’m lucky, that it’s something not everyone has the funds to do, so I’m grateful, but at the same time I love it and I think I’d find a way to see stuff even if I wasn’t able to afford Broadway shows.

Theatre is such a big part of life here. Going to the theatre or going to the local pub and hanging out with a group of friends is about equal in terms of price. There’s a community that gives up nights at the pub so they can go to the theatre, and a country where this can happen is so up my alley.

 

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