The GoGlobal Blog

Week 1

Week 1

Well I made it.

Feels like I’ve been in London for approximately 3 months but I’ve actually been here now for exactly 10 days. My first few days here kind of blurred together. Most of my time the first weekend was spent meeting my new flatmates (all four of them), buying things for the flat to make it feel less like a sterile hospital ward (it was mostly a success), and getting to know the pub that we live above (they already know me by name). Before I get to anything about London, I might as well tell you about my flat first!

The three bedroom flat has one bathroom, no dryer, and is held together with duct tape in some places (literally). Some windows don’t open, some don’t close, and our neighbors keep finding bees. However, it’s in the best location you could possibly ask for in London by far! Not only is it right above a pub with good food and a great atmosphere, it’s about 2 feet away from Regent’s Park and 2 blocks away from the Baker Street Underground Station, which is super convenient. (Yes, for those of you Arthur Conon Doyle fans, it is THAT Baker Street. I’m approximately two doors down from 221b, which makes Sherlock Holmes my fictional neighbor. It’s a cool story to tell but I’m already getting tired of weaving in and out of tourists to get to my front door.) The location around my flat is insanely cool, and it’s also a pretty easy commute to my school; only a 25 minutes Tube ride away.

The Underground has been fairly easy to get the hang of so far, which I suppose I can thank my experience with Chicago public transportation for. The Tube is pretty much just like the L in Chicago, except a bit larger with a few million more people using it. Unfortunately, all my classes either begin or end (or both) during peak rush hour times. I have to transfer lines at King’s Cross station, which kind of makes me feel like a rat in a maze, but so far I’ve always gotten where I needed to be, so I’m going to call my experience with the public transit a success.

While not at orientation, I spent a good chunk of my week last week hitting all the tourist-y places. Camden Market was probably one of my favorites; a maze of food stalls and vintage stores, sometimes indoors, sometimes out. My friends can all expect to get their Christmas presents from Camden Town this year! Regent’s Park is super close to me and a really nice sized parks. It’s easy to get lost in and a great place to sit and read. The London Zoo is also located inside the park. It isn’t free, but if you take the right path you can still sneak a look at the camels! Of course I also had to hit the typical tourist traps like Big Ben and Parliament. Not the MOST exciting, but a must have for the photo album. The architecture here is unlike anything you could find in the US! Another nice thing about London; all the museums are free. My roommate and I managed to stop at the science museum so far, and if it’s anything to go by, I’m very excited to see the rest!


School started today, and I can already tell it’s going to be a lot different than life at Loyola. The only classes available are blocks of three hours, so while I only have each class once a week, it still adds up to a LOT of class time at once. On Tuesday’s I’ll be on campus from 9am until 5pm, and Wednesdays and Thursdays are 2 until 5. The hallways are absolutely a maze (not just to us international students, but students that have been there for years as well). I showed up for class this morning at 8:25, but didn’t find my class until 8:50. I don’t think I’m ever going to complain about finding my class in Chicago again! (I am however, going to continue to complain about textbook prices in the US because 25 pounds ($37) is apparently “expensive” for students here.)

After a week, I’ve really begun to settle in here in London, though I’m still adjusting to looking the opposite way while crossing the street. I’m still looking for a way to watch American Football (even though the Lions are currently 0-3) and I haven’t found a home-y coffee shop yet (I can’t do this tea thing), but other than that, I’m beginning to feel right at home back in a big city!


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