25 Jul Somewhere and Back Again
When thinking about London culture, a major fact I’ve learned is that alcohol is as deeply interwoven into it as tea. That isn’t to mock it, I think it’s more of an observation about their mentality. In the morning rush to work and really anywhere the city is a constant hustle. Everyone has places to be and things to do, preferably now and quickly. So I suppose going to the pub after work like I’ve done with the Absolute team or to a pub quiz with my coworkers or even to the pub at lunch, also with my colleagues, is a necessary way to unwind for them. I also think it’s a way for them to bond when they otherwise wouldn’t. Because even if the company is bad hopefully the wine is good. Okay, that’s terrible. But I suppose this is a vital piece of the social scene to learn about here.
The city itself honestly doesn’t stand out too much from any other big city in the world. That being said, there is a lot to appreciate about the culture-not just of London but of England. It holds stunning sights like from the top of the London Eye. It also boasts the famous Stonehenge, which like many places in the city, is fascinating for its long and rich history. That can be said about many aspects of the country, including Bath which of course has the Roman Baths. More than that though was the intriguing Georgian architecture that, contrary to the very modern London, still feels very connected to its past.
But you learn the most about your place of residence (temporary as it may be) when you compare it a foreign location. In this case that region was Paris. Like London, it is a very big, very bustling and lively city packed with natives and tourists alike. It may even be more so as it seemed like every stop had someone hawking goods or asking for signatures. Unlike London, there seems to be less warmth towards tourists. Contrasting the two even more, there is a surprising difference on the views on sexuality. In Paris, I counted no less than six sex shops on one side of one block.
The feel of the historical features felt more aesthetically grand, from Notre Dame to the Louvre and of course the Eiffel Tower, so many landmarks were just as recognizable for their size as their history. The same can be said of the quality of the food-or at least the crepes I had. The overall experience in France has led to me look at London differently-it feels safer and more business oriented. Everyone is in a hurry because they have responsibilities, not because they’re mean.
Being in both regions has opened me up more to the idea of exploring. In each of these cities is an abundance of life and activity waiting to be discovered. Whether they be restaurants (because they’re mostly restaurants), clubs or parks these places have many an adventure to be found.