So I’ve already written a post about what I miss about London. Here is what I don’t miss.
1) The amount of people. I kind of like being able to walk down the street and not have to walk twice as far as there are so many people in the way. You also have to dodge dog poo, mountains of chewing gum and litter. I can walk for quite a way in our village & not meet many people, and those I do are nearly always walking a dog or taking their kids somewhere. Or on mobility scooters. Which is the most dangerous time to walk in the village in case Dot puts her foot down by accident. Everyone says hello too, which I must admit took me quite a while to get used to. In London anyone who says hello is usually bonkers or someone you know. Nearly always the former & talking to themselves and walking in drunken fashion & holding something strange. Like a doll. Or carrier bags full of rubbish.
2) Commuting on the tube. Don’t get me wrong the tube is great – without the tube, London would feel even bigger and it would take forever to get anywhere as the buses really do get stuck in traffic. It can be pretty fun especially if drunk and carrying a found coat-stand or trying to do gymnastics or tube surf. However, in rush hour it is bloody annoying. It is crowded, smelly, full of people pushing and in a rush, and if you have ibs, the most awful place you can find yourself – claustrophobic with no loo nearby. I commuted for so many years feeling absolutely terrible. More about ibs another time.
3) Mad people. See 1). There are some strange bods there. Especially in Walthamstow where I lived for 11 years. Like the lady with the rotting legs who used to sit on the Victoria Line. The dancing lollipop lady was amusing, but slightly bonkers in the let’s-laugh-at-her-and-move-along-quickly way. Or the people with pushchairs full of shopping. Or rubble. And the people who talked to themselves. In fact there are so many of them you almost start talking to yourself just so you fit in.
4) The cost of renting / buying a house. Our house was lovely but we have so much more space up north. A lovely garden with grass, a bedroom each plus the study isn’t in the living room. I do miss the proximity to public transport and takeaways.
5) Feeling unsafe. Ok I know you can get burgled / mugged etc anywhere but we got burgled twice in our Walthamstow house. I never fully felt safe there. I didn’t enjoy walking after dark either – a few friends had been mugged even in daylight and there was a murder very close to our house. Living where I do now, I am not as worried and am much more relaxed about things – I even sometimes leave the buggy outside the house. Having a stupid dog helps too as the constant barking must be a deterrent. It makes me want to get away from her anyway.
6) Noise. Sirens, music, car horns. We just get lawn mowers here. And birds and dog. Usually our dog. Sorry neighbours.
7) Rubbish. See 1). There is a Facebook page devoted to abandoned mattresses & other such delights in Walthamstow. Of which there is a lot of orphaned mattresses (some which look like celebs). I have not seen a single one in york. Not one. They don’t even come here on holiday. The occasional sofa was also seen in the Stow, along with baths, kitchen sinks – you name it. If you want to recreate a 1980′s interior for free it is definitely the place to go. Just remember to avoid the dog poo.