Thursday, August 16, 2007

London Calling

Did you know that yesterday's highest temperature in London was Athens' lowest? I know, and I know this because I have the misfortune of experiencing this phenomenon.

 

The first shock to my system was suddenly realising that I could understand everything being said around me. This is not necessarily a good thing. When some chavtastic girl is sitting next to you on the bus, blabbing away on her pink bejewelled mobile about how much she likes Chase but Chase don't like her 'cos he likes Mercedes, which makes no sense 'cos Mercedes is a f*cking fat cow and so on and so forth, you wish you could erase the neurological pathways that enable you to understand English.

 

The second shock to the system is all the ethnic minorities. After initially thinking how diverse Athens seemed to have become all of a sudden, I remembered where I was.

 

As time goes on, I feel myself being slowly spat out by London, the city I lived for two years. I have found that settling down in London takes the same time as unsettling down. It happens slowly, over time, until you eventually find the city feels so familiar/alien.

 

Journeying into my office from the airport, I observed what a selfish, miserable bunch Londoners are. Standing in anyone's way for a nano-second results in loud tut's and sighs of exasperation. You'd think everyone was on their way to perform life-saving surgery, but they're all in such a rush mostly to get to their workplaces.

 

Jesus, people! You have the excuse of a decrepit and overcrowded transport system to carry you around London. Blame that rather than a leisurely stroll by Thames for making you late into the office.

 

Using my laptop as a battering ram, I was able to exist and enter carriages quite effectively. The rest of the time I decided to adopt a relaxed Athenian pace, because reason number 1 I hate coming to London is that everyone rushes around so much. So I thought I'll spare myself the anxiety by taking my own sweet time to use up the change in my wallet when paying for things. I reckon the headache I currently have is due to all the kako mati I've collected in the 24 hours since making that decision.

 

Another strange side effect of living in Athens is that all the English I would have spoken when I wasn't speaking Greek has accumulated at the back of my throat. There it has sat, decomposing while I spoke Greek. Now that I have the need to speak English, these half decomposed words have all decided to head for the exit.

 

Hence I speak in a bizarre mish-mashed accent of all the places with an accent I've ever lived (Midlands, Wales, London, Athens, Homeland) as well as half rotten grammar and no worthwhile syntax. "You sound like a drunk!" my little sister kindly pointed out to me last night.



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2 comments:

AL said...

somehow reading your blog cheered me up today. thanks.

Blackbird said...

Ah, charming younger sisters - mine has just kindly informed me that my english 'seriousssly sucks' now.

Glad to see you're still writing! Your blog is by far one of my favourites :)