London, baby!

When I was browsing through my old stuff the other day I recaptured many lovely memories of past times which I have spent in many different places. Suddenly I had certain songs in my mind again, and remembered places I went to, people I hung out with, and many more general impressions of those different places.

By that time I was still far away from starting my little blog, but now I feel it is time for a little recap series of the cities I used to call home. 

I will start with the most exciting place which was London. During 2008 I was spending half a year in the most buzzing place of the UK and worked, partied, lived away roughly six month in Britain's capital. Lucky me. 

I started my journey in Clapham (Common) where I moved into my first London home. Clapham is located in London's South easily accessible via the Northern Line.

The area was an uprising area, prices were rising by that time and from what I heard kept increasing so that Clapham is not a cheap area in London anymore.
I will show you around a little bit now :)
Serious warning: Once again, be prepared for a photo overload!

The road where I used to live..

And the house -- of which I had one spacious and pretty room for myself plus a large bathroom for myself. 

And the local pub which saved my life. No, really. 
They had internet.

This is where I worked.
I took the Northern Line from Clapham Common and changed to the Victoria Line, I believe it was in Stockwell. Went off the Tube in Victoria and had a 5 mins walk to my office. Which happened to be right next to the Buckingham Palace.

This is how it looked when I popped to the city centre quickly for some shopping.

And this was the one of our local pubs for an obligatory after work pint. Or two.

I had two of my friends visiting me in London ..

Big hello at Liverpool St Station

... And we did a lot of sight seeing together. Which was of course a good opportunity since I was mostly busy with work mostly did not take the time and go see the sights all by myself.

 Exploring the city on foot is an efficient way to see a lot.. When I went to London for the first time I made the mistake taking the tube wherever I needed to go, and probably missed out brilliant alleyways, small shops and lovely hidden bookstores. Besides that the tube is also rather time consuming if it comes to short distances.

Of course we sneaked around Camden Town. 
Among some other people who obviously had the same idea on that rainy day.

On a lovely Sunday me and a college from work went to visit the Natural history museum. 
Did you know that all London museums and galleries are for free? They would only charge you for a special exposition. This is a superb opportunity for students to have a grand time on a small budget. I was a frequent visitor of the Tate Galleries and also loved the smaller ones, especially around the East End - my secret favorite part of London.

By June I was able to move into my new place. A flat share just off the posh side of London, in Kensington. My Kensington was the not so posh-Kensington and called Kensington Olympia. The good thing was that I could WALK to all the awesome places in Kensington, Holland Park and Notting Hill.

This was our living room. We had a spacious flat share with people from different places all over the world. When I was there that was Italy, Mexico, Germany and Spain. The Italian guy would cook pasta for us (before he broke his elbow) and the conversation would be Spanish. Duh. My Spanish sucks. Italians always kinda manage to talk Spanish somehow.

This was my room. It was h-u-g-e.
It was too huge. 
I had not only one of those over dimensional closets, but two (The second one is on the left side of the room, right next left to the fireplace) so you have an idea about how big it was. 
And I loved it. 
I loved this place.
I loved my fireplace, I loved being close to everything, so that I did not have to depend on the tube which was often closed on weekends due to refurbishments aiming at 2012 Olympics.

Going out was BIG in London.
And expensive.
Given the idea you are an expat, not knowing anyone who takes you in. And it was also difficult to know where to go, since there are a lot of those touristy places such as Tiger tiger, or the Walkabouts.
To the latter we made it once or twice or so. They had pound nights and such.

We also partied a bit throughout the Euro 2008 -- or was it the world cup ? 
Anyways, we basically wore our National colors, had drinks, and danced through the nights.

When we survived one week it was always time for some excursions. 
Richmond was a particular highlight:
I can highly recommend a small out-of-town day so super close to London. There is plenty of walking opportunity, drinks by the river, gardens, flowers, pubs, shops etc etc.

I met there with colleges from work and friends from my home university who happen to be in London at the same time.

Richmond River bank beers and ciders. Splendid!!

Sometimes I would be an early bird and wake up to wander around  and shoot the sleeping town... 

I took hundreds of pictures, until my batteries of my camera would give up...

And these are some of my favorites.

I absolutely recommend getting up early one time once you are in a special place.
It is worth it.

Even without a super camera. 

One day we headed to Oxford and popped into a cafe. 
They probably have the coolest take-away cappuccino cups.
If I could, without appearing totally mental I would have taken it home. 
I think.

I had a day off. 
What do Londoners when they have a day off?
Well, I don't know really.
But I went to the park.
I believe that's Kensington Gardens.

Or they do some serious shopping.

Well, this one I skipped and headed towards the Zaras and Mangos.

According to the amount of pictures I have of me in parks I must have spend most of my time entirely in London's green areas.

This was around Regents Park.

I absolutely recommend a day out in the zoo.
And meet the giraffes.
I could not take my eyes off them.
So beautiful!

One time we booked a London City walk through the East End.
The cool thing was that it was all around a certain topic. 
We have picked the Jack the Ripper tour and it was really worth it!
We received a lot of London and mystery input that very night.
Since it was summer, it was not that dark and therefore a little less creepy.
Which was maybe better for me anyways.
(I did not even watch 1 horror movie ever)

Me and a friend popping to the Late Tate one evening after work.

I think we came back from a German pub called Zeitgeist that day.

And I was wearing an embarrassing combination of clothes. 

This one was an exceptional night out. (No idea what I practiced here though) We started at one of those swimming pubs.
They have boat pubs along the banks.
Go and check them out, they're great fun. 

Here we were probably on our way to the next place to get us hydrated.

That day we headed out of London to Stoke Park Club for a golf event we organized.
It was pretty awesome, since it was the place where they also shot Bridget Jones, some James Bond movie, and several other films.
The scenery was beautiful, the golf course superb (certainly)and the dining rooms quite distinguished.

When the golfers golfed and our work was done, we sat in the sun (like I did here) and enjoyed the break.

This whole adventure has been very special to me. I would like to thank everyone I met during my months in London for making this such a special time of my life!
Thank you!!


My favorite spots were mostly the parks, where I would sit with a  cup of take away tea, a book and my iPod to enjoy the sun and escape the hectic for a moment.
Because, you know, I am more the country girl. The one who would hang around horses all day (if I could), walk the dog, do my running exercise etc. I am more the yoga - girl. Whereas London is more the Zumba. 

I like Zumba. But I need the yoga from time to time. Which I always found in the parks.
Kensington Gardens were my home park, so I used to go there a lot.
Green Park and St James were around the corner from work so naturally we frequently picnicked there. 
Occasionally we went up to Hampstead Heath, which I absolutely loved, but it was quite far away, so it stayed a treat.

However, my favorite club was probably the White House. I went there a couple of times with friends to enjoy and dance to some nice electronic music. One time they had the Disco boys coming over from Hamburg. 
Bonus: I could walk home (home #1)- it took me 5 minutes.
Every cafe is my favorite, so it is hard for me to figure out a particular one.

Anyone else spent a year / term or a holiday in London? Or even live in London? 
Where is your favorite spot? Favorite bar? Club? Cafe?

Would love to hear your opinion!

Happy weekend!!

Much love,



  1. What a wonderful experience for you to have lived in London. We live just two hours away by train and we always enjoy our trips there sometimes for the day or the weekend. A great selection of photos and I love the fact that the museums are free too. I lived in France for a year and like you have many happy memories of living abroad.

  2. i LOVE london! looks like you had an amazing time there :) xox

  3. I loved my short visit to London and really want to go back/possibly live there someday. It has so much going on and so much personality. Your neighborhood looked adorable! What a cool time in your life!

  4. I would give anything to live in London!! I lived in Cambridge for a while and hopped on the train to London every weekend!! Like you said, I love looking back and thinking of all the great memories. It's a gift to live and experience so much, but it's also sad because it DOES break your heart to leave everything behind and start all over yet again.

    Thank you for the lovely comments on my blog. I'm following you on Google Friend Connect. Would be lovely if you could do the same. Keep in touch XO

    1. I am already following you ;-)
      Would love to keep in touch!!