A CONSTANT nag in my household is that ‘we don’t do enough cultural stuff in London’. Ok, nag is too strong a word, but it’s a niggle – almost a regret – that we are not making the absolute most of our time here in this amazing city. Sure life in London can be hectic and there is inevitably something to do almost every night of the week (even if that only entails rugby training or hitting the gym) but when I head home in a year or two, I want to look back on my time in the English capital and not regret a thing. I want to have done ol’ Blighty, and London-town in particular, to bits!
However, it wasn’t until I was in the tranquil surroundings of the London Eye last week that this fact really hit home. There is so much stuff here that I haven’t yet done but is on my London wishlist. Every week I look at Bron in the Don’s articles and think, ‘oh, yes, I have to go and do that’. But each week, instead of that list getting smaller and me taking some solid advice from our resident London explorer, my list actually gets longer.
It’s crazy too because some of the best times I have had in this city have been when I have been out and about doing the cultural/touristy/sight-seeing stuff. Take for instance my climb to the top of Monument and the resulting certificate you get when you trek back down the 100,000 steps. Ok, I may not know where that bloody certificate is, and the view from the top isn’t as spectacular as from say the top of St Paul’s, or the roof terrace of the New Zealand High Commission or even the London Eye (on a non-foggy day) but it is the memory of the experience that stays with me. Probably my favourite London experience by far was a romantic trip down the Thames on a ferry, marvelling at the sights of the city whizzing past, then exploring the beauty that is the little ‘village’ of Greenwich at the end. And that was in January! The coldest time of the year.
I guess what I am saying, what I am trying to convince myself, is — our time here (for most of us) is relatively short. Soon we’ll be back home on the beach, boring our mates with stories from the “grey, drab land full of whinging Poms” but secretly cringing inside because you spent more time in a Walkie instead of going to Borough Market or checking out what the inside of St Paul’s looks like. Basically — guys, girls, hermaphrodites, and most importantly — ME — get out there and make the most of London!
What London sights and experiences are you still dying to do? Tell us below: