Category: LDN life

A weekend celebrating spring and life

A barley took any pictures from my visit to Stockholm and the archipelago. I had no time, too much fun. And too much fun sums pretty much up my life these last few weeks.

It all started on the last Friday of april, the 29th of april. We met up at Strongroom, this pub with a great outdoors space, or more of a yard actually. All my best people dropped in one after one, we talked about the week that’s gone by – as you do on Fridays. After a couple of beers we headed over to another pub to say hi to a friend and his visiting family. It was literally across the street. We moved on to Translate for some groovy dance moves and drinks. They usually play great music, but not this night. So I jumped into an Über and endued up at NT’s opening night. Like all the cool kids. I danced, met a girl on the terrace. We talked till the first rays of the sun warmed our faces. Then I walked home, met my flat mate in the kitchen and we went trough her relationship. More often than not I start to really like being single.

On Saturday, the last day of April, I met up with Adam, Elin and Amalia down on Broadway Market. We had rosé wine in the sun. You know, the first really warm spring sun and how happy it makes you?! Yes, this was exactly that day. When the sun moved so did we, over to NT’s. Again. With champagne in our hands we met new friends, had truffle chips and danced to in the afternoon sun. At NT’s they have these really big industrial windows, a perfect location for a music video. If there ever was one we would surely make the main event of said music video. There was so much pure joy in the air, as it is when you celebrate spring and life. In the evening we made our ways home to The Village, had a pizza and then crashed in bed before 10pm. Daytime parties are the only parties worth having (it’s not really true, but to 55%).

IMG_4816

On Sunday, the first day of May and a bank holiday Sunday, we continued the festivities!

Pizza in the park (I was not in my finest condition) and then over to N360 and the rooftop of my dreams. After some cocktail popsicles we were all back on track again. Random friends dropped by and are small group grew into an eleven people squad, which I later on presented to the doorman at NT’s as “me and my squad”. Obviously. We made our ways up the stairs and out onto the terrace. Having the banter of our lives.

IMG_4839

In the evening almost all of us walked the short distance (it’s ten minutes) to The Village and The Lauriston for some crazy karaoke rumble. It basically works like this: 1, pick a song. 2, go up on a stage. 3, hope you choose a crowdpleaser and the crowd does not boo you off the stage. I did not sing. I booed, and occasionally cheered. And had another beer. As you do. After we left, we made pasta in Adam’s kitchen and I was in bed before midnight. Daytime parties.

Next thing that happened: I fly off to Sweden for an unexpected archipelago treat. But it’s another story.

A well kept secret

Somedays I go to the Deli two streets away, the play classic music or some very sweet soft jazz all day. And for moments, this smal place gets totally overcrowded in seconds, like it’s the only place to be, and then as if someone waved a wand it’s super quiet again. The staff are joking around and are ever so friendly. deli_1

If I don’t pay straight away I always forget it and have to go back. Two out of two times its happened. Once I didn’t notice I skipped pay my breakfast until I went back in the afternoon for a flat white – they do great coffee, great coffee. The other time I started to walk back home to pick up my headphones and I was ‘shit, I did it again…’. Now I’ve spent the better part of my day here, trying to find a proper job, making up my mind about the future and procrastinating, drinking lemonade and becoming one of the hipsters of the area. I have my hat on!

This is a very interesting little village in the east corner of London. Not really the corner, it’s still only in zone two, but it’s a well kept secret, as if very few people knows about its existing. There’s only locals at all the places around. And all the places are great, the deli, the sourdough pizza pub, the fancy pub, the vietnamese restaurant, the café and all the others, they are great. Good food, nice and friendly staff, interesting locals, and better friends. No, I’ve to continue on my to do-list.

_MG_6451_Fotor

Beyond The Wall

This country, the lands of the Queen, is more or less an episode beyond The Wall of Westeros. I HAVE NEVER BEEN THIS COLD IN MY ENTIRE LIFE. NEVER. Not even the day in the Swedish Fjäll when it was -30 (probably mostly because we stayed in…). But it’s so cold here, I barely can’t take it anymore. I freeze when I go to bed and I freeze when I wake up. Its warmer outdoors than indoors. Someone has totally not understand the purpose of houses.

RR_cold

And I can go on and on and on about all the things I’m equally unhappy with. But let’s not. Because I can’t take one more day with ridiculous politics; brexiters or remainers. Stupid PMQs more fitting a reality show than the most powerful room in all of the Queen’s land. And please, don’t let me get started on flat sharing. This abomination of adult living. I miss my home. But let’s not talk about all of that. There are greater things ahead, I hope. Warmer at least. Summer should be coming.

I want to talk about daytime parties, warm evening winds that softly plays with the tree branches. Music. I love music, can always talk about music.

Familj och Londonfamilj

På söndagen sov vi lite längre, helt klart välförtjänt. Och solen tittade fram, jag blir ju glad för mindre saker. VI hoppade på tåget till Liverpool St, för att inte lämna deras väskor där. Det var så dumt, en kunde bara betala för tre eller tjugofyra timmar, vi hade behövt typ fyra timmar. Och tjugofyra timmar var dubbelt så dyrt. Så vi släpade med väskorna till Flower Market på Columbia Road, vilket var lite av en surrealistisk upplevelse. Det var för mycket folk för att kunna gå framåt, och för mycket folk för att kunna stanna och titta. Men det var intressant. Borde ha fler blommor på mitt rum, nu har jag bara en vissen påsklilja.

Jag snappade mer än jag fotade så blev inga bilder från den här dagen. Vi åt lunch på Franco Manca på Broadway Market innan jag vinkade av min familj på Liverpool St. Så sorgligt. Jag gick hem och var en crybaby. För att inte försmäkta i min ensamhet hade jag styrt middag med min Londonfamilj på kvällen. Först tog jag och Seb en drink på Hector & Noble för att vänta på Annie, sen begav vi oss till Boxpark och mötte upp några fler. Det är en av de saker jag gillar så mycket med London, en möts bara upp och det är helt naturligt. Stockholm är mer, stängda till sina egna gäng.

IMG_4706

Vi satt där tills det blev kallt och vårt bord var redo. I upphetsning skuttade vi (jag) bort till Redchurch St och den hemliga rooftopen jag hittat! Det är min bästa grej, hitta bra ställen som få vet om. Eller i alla fall hitta bra ställen. Det här var helt galet bra. Magi. Och skaldjursplatå till halva priset, total inklusive allt £15 ! Helt klart värt.

IMG_4717

Och med en solnedgång över London i bakgrunden var den dagen över.

En kalasdag !

Vi tog en tidig kväll och fortsatte vår family weekend nästan i ottan på lördagen. Okej, tio är inte i ottan, men med ett snålblåsigt och fuktigt London känns alla tider att lämna sängen för tidiga. När jag mötte upp min familj utanför deras hotell, The Old Ship, började vi promenera mot Broadway Market för lite flanerande och spatserande. Trots duggregnet spenderade vi ungefär två timmar innan det var dags för fika. Den bästa av svenska traditioner. Jag tog med dem till Violet som ligger en bit upp men är supermysig och har väldigt gott kaffe. Gott kaffe är helt klart viktigt.

IMG_4674

Efter att ha värmt oss med cupcakes och kaffe hoppade vi på bussen till British Museum för att undersöka allt mitt nya landsfolk har snott med sig på sina upptäcktsresor. Min pappa sammanfattade stora delar av museet med ‘Har de inget annat än sten…?’ Vilket var en väldigt relevant fråga. De här Britterna har verkligen kånkat med sig enorma statyer, väggar, och helar rum i sten. Intressant, men väldigt mycket. Trötta som bara den satte vi oss på närmsta pub för öl och lunch. Vilket var exakt vad vi behövde.

På kvällen mötte vi upp Sebastian i the village (området där jag bor) på Hector & Noble och sen vidare till Vu Viet tvärsöver gatan. Galet god mat! Lite sjukt att jag knappt behöver gå mer än hundra meter för att äta på de bästa restorangerna i London.

Jag gillar groupies !

Jag gillar groupies !

Efter middagen tog jag och Sebastien med min bror på en rejäl hemmafest – något som snappades ordentligt.

Dan var där !

Dan var där !

Helt klart en kalasdag!

I am a crybaby

Nästan en månad sedan jag skrev sist. Inte för att det inte har hänt saker, snarare tvärtom. Idag är jag dock en crybaby. Min familj åkte hem igår, vilket får mig att känna mig lite mindre. Ju längre bort jag bor och – kanske ännu mer – ju äldre jag blir, desto viktigare är min familj. När jag var tjugoett och flyttade hemifrån på riktigt var det inte alls samma sak. Då var det skönt, men nu. Nu kryper jag ihop till en liten boll och gömmer mig under täcket.

Vi hade i vilket fall som helst en riktigt, riktigt bra helg. Promenerade runt i regnet, hängde på rooftops, åt mat, skrattade, levde livet. Allt som en gör i världens bästa stad.

IMG_4660

De kom hit tidigt på fredag, före lunch. Vi tog en promenad genom Victoria Park, hamnade på Netil360, kanske en av de bästa rooftops i London. Väldigt East. Vi sippade på en öl och lyssnade på regnet. Pratade om framtiden, om svårigheter med det här jävla landet. Om vad som är bra, och vad som är dåligt. Sen dansade vi ned för alla trapporna och ut i regnet igen för lunch.

På kvällen åkte vi ända vägen in till centrala London för middag och teater. Jag hade bokat bord på Dishoom, en indisk resturang som är mer än en curry shop. Ganska fint faktiskt, och bra mat för att vara indiskt, fräscht och utan trasiga kycklingar dränkta i sås. Jag hade en gräddgrej till dessert och kunde knappt gå efteråt. Mycket gott! Sedan var det dags för teater, The Mousetrap. Det är en Agatha Christie mordhistoria. Lite som att vara med i Cluedo. Mycket flott.

IMG_4670

Driving forces

Can I have a Peroni, please?

I sit in this creative space, a café that turns into a bar in the evenings (like all creative spaces do), and I just want to not think of all the stuff. The important grown-up stuff. If we only could be young forever, roam the streets and forget about tomorrows and the days after that. I scroll through my phone, I’ve reached out to all of them. They are all sick, on vacation, at work, at this or that or just home. And peoples life just goes on and on, I can’t believe how time scares me, how we never pause, how most of us are living in tomorrow – where it happens, where life starts.

Let’s just reinvent ourselves. Let’s live life. Let’s treat every day as a bonus. We could have died. It is an reality.

After having all these thougths on the five step walk from the bar I sit down at my laptop, the light is now more red than yellow – perks of being a bar, you can have red lights – and write this.

As I am sipping on my cold beer, overhearing two Swedish girls chitchatting and telling secrets I can’t get this thought out of my head. ‘We can die tomorrow, life can end’. Let me say that again, life can end tomorrow. Blackness, nothingness, end. This is one of the strongest driving forces in my life.

And because this is England, they have a minimun card charge. I go up, head over to the bar and order another one, so I can pay for my first one.

The taste of a great week

I wake up early these days, before my alarm sets off. It’s the sun warming my face, finding its way through my single glassed windows, stroking my cheek. It’s Monday morning, my first thought is that I’ve slept through my alarm, hit snooze in my sleep and the time is more midday than morning. It’s not. She’s not even seven.

I had a great weekend. And a great week. A great one. There was nice dinners, comedy nights, late night uber drives home and to other parties. Lots of great friends. You know, all the things one want out of life. I met up with Annie on Friday, we grabbed a sandwich dinner and headed to Out of Office for some dancing. It’s a world where everything feels a bit more shiny. A good world. Afterwards I a took an uber to Shoreditch for another dance floor and more friends. And new friends. Long night. Waking up on Saturday to House of Cards, which followed me through the rest of the weekend. That and gaming. On Sunday night, me and Seb helped Isabelle and Linnea with their move. We had indian take outs and some wine. As one do.

IMG_4351 (1)

Now, it’s Monday.

Och jag har räknat på hur mycket pengar jag har har spenderat. Kanske jag bara ska slicka mina sår, vända hem och inse att det inte är hållbart. Krossa drömmen. Vad är värt, vad är pengar? Så många frågor, så lite svar. Och vad ska jag göra med de pengar jag har? Ska jag tänka på framtiden, eller ska jag tänka på det som är här och nu? Något som är säkert – jag behöver spendera mindre pengar. Hittills idag: £1,49. Det är betydligt bättre än tidigare.

En helt annan sak, det var ganska trevligt att skriva på svenska Kanske att jag ska börja göra det.

Mondays will be…

Mondays will be Mondays. It is known (now). It really doesn’t matter where in the world you are, your everyday life has Mondays. They recurs once every week and there’s nothing you can do about it. Today is a Monday. Not a blue or dark one, a sunny one. But, still a Monday. I feel a bit sick, or perhaps I’m just cold. Indoor coldness is the worst.

London is weirder than ever. Sometimes, mostly on Mondays, I miss my stable life in Stockholm. I don’t miss the snow and I love having all my friends here. But just the small things, having lunch with colleagues, going to the gym, all the little things a stable everyday life is. I do say stable, I could have said ordinary, but I don’t think my life ever was ordinary.

I moved yesterday. To an old victorian house with creaking wooden floor planks, high ceiling and white walls. Five minutes to Viccy park and two to my best friend. No isolation and single glass. My flatmates are interesting. New, very different from my usual squad of swedes. Time will tell if it’s a good thing, or not.

Bold

Bold. B O L D. I like that word, it tastes good in your mouth. It feels good in your stomach. Bold. Today I was called bold, a daredevil even. That felt really good. We need to be bold to conquer the world. We need to dare to see beyond the horizon.

I quit my job. I sold my flat. I bought a one way ticket.

And it’s the most terrifying thing I’ve ever done. I question my decision almost every day. But I do not question my boldness. I believe most people have a hard time understanding how challenging it can be, how challenging it is. To tear up ones roots, to head out into the unknown. It is a bold thing to do. It is not a very common thing to do. And yet, people do it every day.

My life is way better today than it was Monday. I’ve a room in a beautiful victorian house, massive dark wooden floor planks, white walls, high ceiling, five minutes to Victoria Park, two minutes to my best friend. For £750 – double of what I payed for my entire 45 square meter flat in Stockholm. I need to have an income, or my boldness will be in vain.

I do hope we can see boldness in more people. In those fleeing the Syrian war. In those standing up for their sexuality. In those standing up for humanity, those fighting for disabled people, poor people, for equality, for better condition at their work place. London is an amazing city, it has so much to offer and so much to experience. So much boldness, so many daredevils, so much diversity. But Britain as a nation, as a people? I can’t in my wildest of imaginations understand what they are afraid of. I’m paying £750 a month for a room, how can they even argue that anyone would come here for the benefits (which, if you are unemployed is £73 a week, that won’t find you roof over your head, not even a shared room). People come here for the possibilities, the opportunities, because they are bold. Not because of benefits. Please, be bold and accept love, leave your hate and pettiness because it does not belong in a great nation.

On a side note, I may read too many Facebook comments on news articles. People have terrible opinions.