The best part of the job has to be that the company provided board and meals for the staff, but especially the rooms, they were basic but who gives a damn when you're in London?? This way I was able to meet a group of people from all over the place, there was French, Hungarian, Australian, English, another Irish girl, Brazilian, Spanish really everywhere, and they were mostly so lovely, I had met one Hungarian on a Wednesday and the next day he invited me on a roadtrip to Stonehenge with 3 Australians, a Spaniard and a French man, it was on this trip where my nickname emerged for that summer, as one of the ozzies misheard Niamh.......as a word that rhymes with Bympho........... oh dear...
On my days off I could find myself anywhere, I once couldn't sleep so went for a walk to buckingham palace at five in the morning and it was like being in an apocalyptic movie or something the sun was coming up but there was no one around it was so quiet and unnatural Ihad a friend from home who was in London at the same time and we had a date night every Sunday and we ended up at different markets and exhibitions and eating lists of weird and wonderful foods, if you go to Camden or any of the foodmarkets and don't have a crocodile burger or some other oddball food you are missing out in my opinion!
What I enjoyed the most I think was the fact that everyone was equal to everyone else. Some of us had degrees in something or other, some were on the way to getting them, some were finished with years, it meant nothing, the thing that was important was that we were all travelers getting out of home and seeing what was out there in the world, sharing themselves and their stories and everything they had basically to help their fellow travelers, I've seen this when staying in hostels over the years too.
One of the highlights of that trip was I met someone, it took 20 years to find someone who I didn't annoy and scare away, I was always the weird one in school and in college I didn't really want anyone like that anyway, not that there was a line of suitors knocking on my door anyway, but with him the timing seemed so good, I had made a card for my brother where I had happy birthday written in about 10 languages, and I asked him to write it in his, and the rest was history(vomit) from 2am till 4 pm almost everyday we were together watching drawn together or Big Bang theory just chilling out with the rest of our workmates or just together, me forever helping him with his English,
We made promises to see each other as I headed to the station to fly home to repeat an exam, but because of a mixture of lack of passports, and a muddle of misunderstandings on both our parts (we mixed up a meeting point when I was in London last and we both believed the other had strood the other up) but finally met up this past weekend in his place, just reminiscing about that summer acting like two old people (I now have a much better understanding on why reminiscing is so important)
It was so surreal seeing him again after all the time had passed and all the things I thought I'd say to him if I did ever see him again . The relationship of course was complicated and at twice one of the two of us ended it but Something else I discovered that loneliness and lonely people do things to a person that you would not expect and that if perhaps the person was not so lonely what would have
I think I can safely say London changed me, I like to think for the better I discovered people can like me for me craziness and hyperness. I discovered not everyone is going to like you and you can't do anything about it but you are going to be around them and you just have to find a way to deal with it, I discovered good people can do things that are not so good but they still are good people even so. I found out i could hang out on my own and be completely content and I discover how real and saddening the feeling of loneliness can be and unexpected things come from it.