Monday, 3 January 2011

Reality Bites

Happy New Year everyone! I hope the festive period has left everyone feeling relaxed and invigorated. Okay, so bloated and hung over is more likely for the majority. But, after ten days visiting family and friends, and despite spending New Years Day with a decidedly unforgiving stomach (note to self not to mix Grolsch, red wine, bubbly and Harvey Wallbanger in the future) on a train back to London with the World’s Heaviest Suitcase, I am feeling relatively at peace with the world.
Despite my misgivings, my train travel over the holidays was remarkably simple. Okay, so we opted for the slow train to Peterborough to avoid the rush on the East Coast Mainline, but we had a seat for the entire journey. And our other two train journeys on New Year’s Eve and Day were also pain free. There was space for our luggage, AND we got a seat. Without booking in advance. I still can’t quite believe it. The icing on the cake was the bus we caught back home from the station. I was all in favour of getting a taxi but Him Indoors did not fancy paying Bank Holiday prices, so with a sinking heart I trundled to the bus stop, World’s Heaviest Suitcase in tow. The bus stop was deserted. The bus was half empty. And yet again, there was room for our cases with seats right next to them. I was starting to think we were in the wrong city until the bus deposited us outside our flat.
The following day, I made a brave decision. No, I didn’t quite make it to the gym (my stomach was still a bit dodgy), but I went sale shopping. On Oxford Street. Yes, of my own free will. And... I quite enjoyed it. Yes, it was busy and yes, the shops were ransacked of most decent items, but I returned with a smashing blouse, a lovely cardie, some knee-high socks, a DVD and a sense of satisfaction. And relatively stress-free. In fact, it wasn’t the bargain hungry crowds which increased by blood pressure, but the excitement of catching a glimpse of some of the new season’s offerings. I have already earmarked £55 of next month’s salary on a couple of rather delightful tops I spotted.
So, I returned home yesterday with a smile on my face and a spring in my step. Today... well, today I have to face up to the fact that I have to return to work tomorrow and interact with people other than my family and friends who, like me, would rather be tucked up in bed with a hot chocolate whilst watching Love Actually and pretending that the holidays have only just begun.
Something tells me my feeling of contentment is about to be challenged very shortly. But, until that time, I am going to make myself a cup of tea and settle down in front of the telly until Him Indoors reminds me to get ready for my impending doom and go to bed.
Goodbye Holidays. Hello reality.


  1. Hi Shelly!

    I couldn't have said it better myself! Had 7 days at home near Manchester and I can safely say that my journey back was horrific, work was horrific, and London's've guessed it - horrific!

    I'm trying my best to be positive about the place, even arranging to do the touristy things I've not got around to, but still my heart is in the North! I just don't get why people love this place so much?

    Trix x

  2. Hiya Trix,

    Glad you understand where I am coming from! I have to say that part of me does love living in London, but the longer I live here, the more its ugly side rears its head.
    I don't know how long you have lived here but I do recommend taking advantage of London's gems - it takes a bit of effort but is certainly worth it. And, despite the grime, the rudeness and the expense, London does have a certain energy that you don't get in a lot of other places.