In our writing and listening option classes we explore different vocabulary and structures for writing. Recently, the students discussed their favourite experiences here in London, before examining the style of writing required for a blog post. Paulina, from Germany, is a talented student at Tti, and below is an excellent blog post she produced about her experiences here in London.
London, the City
London is a city. Everybody knows this but to really internalise this you have to take the underground every morning for at least one week. Of course, the city of London will never lose its charm and for someone like me who grew up with Harry Potter it will never lose its touch of magic. The sight of red double-decker buses still gives me the tingles and hearing someone saying “cheers, love” still makes me smile.
Nevertheless, all of this is easily forgotten when I find myself surrounded by crotchety tired faces in a closed space with temperatures awfully reminiscent of a cheap sauna. As soon as I step out of the station though, my mood changes rapidly. I get a whiff of the fresh city air. I hear a woman in a serious looking suit tell her client to change the appointment from 7 o’clock to 8 o’clock. To my right I already see the first shop owners open up and I can’t wait for what the day might have in store. As I am writing this I have already spent almost two weeks in the city I love and have attended classes that offered me possible friends I would never have met otherwise. I mean who would have guessed that I’d find myself overzealously discussing feminism with a lovely Palestine girl during my lunch break? Not me. And who would have guessed that a garden party organised by language schools could really be fun? Again I have to confess, not me.
I was still in that negative state of mind when our small group of Tti students arrived at the venue. It was a lovely, small fenced public garden with an unfortunately long queue in front of it. A wave of sighs and disappointed looks came over our group as we stood at the end of the line in the brightly burning sun. Annoyed looks were exchanged and the fun-meter sank close to zero. Then suddenly Sally, the teacher responsible for us, came to us with great news. She somehow managed to get us in before other groups because some of us had to leave quite early. So we passed the other students and were finally let in. As soon as my friend Anna and I saw the different stands offering games and prizes we took off to win everything we could. We could get our faces painted, listened to drunk Spanish students playing the guitar and singing loudly and tried fishing apples out of an aquarium with our mouths.
Some of the stands took money for the attractions but knowing that it would be given to charity, we happily paid. By far the best part of the day was that I won a plastic medal for managing to throw rubber chickens into some buckets. That might sound weird, but for me who has never won anything it made the sunshine taste even sweeter.
In a few minutes now I will take the bus to go to another school-organised event: a pub crawl. I feel the fear of overfilled trains and late night tubes creep up on me. I have learned that London is a city. But I have also learned how to conquer it…in moderation.
By Paulina, Germany
Thanks, Paulina for your honest and poetic words about our fair city! We’re glad to hear you are experiencing the real London. Our school-organised social activities run every day. Why not take a look at what’s on the rest of this month here.