Sure, Audrey Hepburn (in Sabrina!) was talking about Paris… But I think I feel the same way about London. Plus, I’ve never actually been to Paris. London is definitely always a good idea. And after neglecting my poor passport for over two years, I breathed a sigh of relief as we stepped past border control at Heathrow and onto the escalator that took us down to the tube.
We got quite attached to our little street.
We got quite attached to our little street.I’ve never been in love with big cities, but London is the exception. I felt like I was back home, and my feet still wanted to hit autopilot as we passed Victoria station on my old route to Pimlico.
For the 7 days I got to be back in London, we stayed in Notting Hill. It was an area I had never really explored while living in Pimlico. There’s just too much London to explore all of it in even five years’ time, much less five months! Nevertheless, I really enjoyed Notting Hill!
It’s a posh little neighborhood, full of stereotypical white facades with pillars and tiled stoops. Our host was really lovely, and the room was twice as spacious as the little shoebox I was used to during my internship. It only took until the jetlag wore off for my mental Central London map to start working again, and to get back that instinctual grasp of North, South, East, and West.
It was especially fun showing Kate around central London since she had never been there before. I’m sure I was dragging her from place to place more than was strictly necessary, but I was also eager to see all the sights I had missed in the last two years.
Kate and I had possibly the longest travel day I’ve ever experienced on our way to Heathrow, as we were trying to save on airfare. So it meant we had some unavoidable layover time… the longest of which was in Boston. I don’t believe I had ever been to Boston before, and since we were in an incredibly small and boring terminal of the airport… I decided to see what we could possibly get up to with our backpacks and some public transportation.
We sorely needed some fresh air and time away from other tired terminal travelers. I found an easy route from the airport shuttle to the Boston subway station, with the help of an information desk and tourist map. From there, some cheap short-term tickets got us a few stops away to what appeared to be somewhere close to downtown and out into the sunlight.
We walked out to a harbor that was full of people and spent a little while wandering aimlessly before parking ourselves on a bench that had a great view. We did still have our heavy backpacks with us, after all. Just sitting in the breeze did a world of good.
So, if you’re ever stuck in the Boston airport for an inordinate amount of time… Getting a map and subway ticket will be worth it.
Much happier campers with fresh air!
As I mentioned in my #Add1Challenge Recap, I had quite a few resources I used to learn. I also had a schedule that I (mostly) stuck to. I’m now halfway through 2016 and I’m ignoring my self-imposed deadline of being conversationally fluent in a year with determination, just attempting to keep up my study schedule and methods without overwhelming myself.
Not overwhelming yourself is key.
So, in an attempt to keep everything for myself organized, and to help others who may be learning a language, I’m laying out the steps to start – and continue – learning.