London, my dear, sweet London.. how I adore thee.. but you are both an expensive and hostile bastard.
It is no secret that London is one of the most famous, visited cities in the world and that there are 3 types of people who come across London.
1) Those who love London
2) Those who can’t handle London
and 3) Those who dream of London
Londoners are famous all over the world because they get up at the crack of dawn, and skip down the street, fresh bread in hand singing “Maybe it’s because I’m a Londoner” at the top of their lungs. They only actually stop to greet other people who are out doing the same thing by saying things like “Awight Guvnor?” and then continuing on their merry way.
As much as I wish this kind of stereotype was true, we are far more likely to be sitting on the tube at 8.30am on the way to work, rocking slightly back and forth from a mixture of a hangover and the fright instilled in us of being even slightly late for work, and we will become absolutely livid if you so much as make eye contact with us. Of course we wouldn’t actually shout at you or anything, we’d just sheepishly look away trying to act naturally by looking at the floor, or the stains on the tube, or the paper or something… but we are actually internalising a million ways for you to die all for that one look you just gave us, and if you have the nerve to so much as smile in our direction too then all hell will be to pay… in our heads… all hell will be to pay for in our heads.
There’s a tube etiquette, learn it quickly if you want to survive in London.
1) Don’t look at, smile at, participate in any sort of social interaction with anyone on the tube under any circumstance. Even your best friend, every man is for himself underground.
2) STAND ON THE GOD DAMN RIGHT.
3) Don’t be that moron that everyone hates by getting on the carriage before letting everyone off.
4) Keep your tongue firmly in your own mouth, not in your boyfriends, random hook-ups, husbands, fiance’s, tinder date’s or whatever. Nobody has time for your PDA down here.
5) Playing music from your tinny sounding phone without your headphones? No.
6) Find your oyster card/ travel card/ debit card before you get to the barriers.
7) And finally if someone starts singing a song such as “Don’t stop believing” that everyone knows at a decent hour in the evening, then join in. For gods sake, join in with that beautiful bastards attempts to cause camaraderie and a high school musical moment to everyones day.
This man is my hero.
Moving on from the sore subject of tube etiquette, another problem in London is the price of nearly everything you want to do. But fear not my tourist friends there is plenty waiting for you to go and do in London that most definitely won’t break your bank account.
Looky here at the map showing all of London’s free museums.
The V&A open from 10am – 5.45pm
The Science Museum open from 10am – 6pm
The Natural History Museum open from 10am – 5.50pm
The British Museum open from 10am – 5.30pm and on Fridays it is open until 8.30pm
Stay away from Chelsea, Oxford Circus, Leicester Square, Richmond and you shouldn’t find things are toooooo expensive.
My next post on London will include some advice on where to stay and great dive bars to go out in cheaply. Let me know what else you want to know about getting around my City affordably.