I surprised myself over the past few days by putting in the extra effort to meet new people. I already have one group of interns here to hang out with, but I’ve always been the person with multiple friend groups—so it’s been hard over the past week and a half to adjust!
I had my first ‘couch surfing experience’ on Sunday. This is quite the cool app; it isn’t limited to people who are looking for a place to stay. The ‘events’ section allows you to see what’s going on near you, organized by other couchsurfers.
This is a place full of people who want to meet other travellers, or locals, and try new experiences! I went for a 8k run through Hyde park (my first time being there) with a super friendly guy who had been in London for six years already.
It’s a fresh perspective to hear stories from a local. We had a great time, I pet some swans—and got a bit of exercise in too!
On a different note, I also met up with a new group of girls the next evening. One girl coincidentally moved here the same day as me, is from Ottawa (like me) and is getting into a similar field that I want to pursue.
And this connection all began through me reading her blog a few months ago! So she organized a group hangout, with other new girls, and we met up in person for the first time at the Aqua Shard (the 32nd floor of the Shard).
After some photography sessions, we moved onward to another (less expensive) restaurant for fish and chips!
What a great past few days it’s been. I hope to be as busy as possible for the next little while! I’m always happiest with an full schedule.
Anyone else love meeting new people, but find it challenging to get things started? I’d love to hear!
I’ve been in London now for 12 days, and I have to admit that it’s been hard! Of course there have been great times exploring the streets last weekend, wine and cheese, and afternoon tea – but it’s still been a challenge.
I’ve never travelled or lived alone before, so this strange feeling of both sadness and happiness is unusual for me.
I still feel quite out-of-place and not a part of any close-knit groups; which is something I had at home. Many of the other interns in my program enjoy partying and drinking, which I don’t really like doing anymore.
I would just rather be fully present in my surroundings and have full control of myself than have that uncertainty of going out.
I’m hoping that this weekend will cheer me up – I plan on picking up my residence permit tomorrow, doing healthy groceries (a break from all the pasta, bread and cheese), and maybe a little shopping and visiting some interesting sights.
I would love to take more pictures and try to connect more with all that London has to offer. Because believe me, I know this is an amazing place! It’s just difficult to feel like I’m a part of it rather than just an observer.
Fingers crossed I get over this hump and start to fearlessly conquer everything I set out to see and do! No one else here seems shaken at all by the life-change of living here, so I am starting to feel quite dramatic. I can’t turn a switch and be a cheerful partier, though.
One week later, and I’m still alive! It’s been quite the adventure trying to get used to being in a different time zone (+5 hours). I still can only sleep a maximum of three hours per night. My roomie suggests I take Melatonin; but will it actually help this level of sleep-deprivation?
I bought a desk fan and foam topper for my bed that I’m still waiting for in the mail. Hopefully this combination will help, in addition to fairy lights, as I also have this same set-up at home.
Restoring a sense of normality is crucial for me at this point. It’s been a mixed experience so far, as this is my first time living on my own, far from my friends and family (in Ottawa, Canada).
All of the other interns have lived on their own before, so I seem to be the one having the most difficulty adjusting. I love the city itself, however there is a sense that something is missing. Perhaps sleep!
This past weekend was a fun break from my internship; check out the pictures I’ve taken so far! Many more to come.
If you have any tips for jet lag or missing home, please let me know!