exciting, informative, snarky, and very likely fabricated tales of life as an american expat in london

urban edge

by Jen at 1:05 pm on 19.10.2006 | 1 Comment
filed under: londonlife, world tour

four days and it still feels kinda like christmas – discovering clothes i’d forgotten i owned (including, miracle of miracles, underwear which is *not* one of the 8 black pairs i’ve been wearing for 6 months straight!), friends cooking us lovely dinners, emails saying “welcome home”, and blissfully reloading the ipod with all my faves.

i know this is all too good too last. like the tan, it will fade. is already fading.

what is starting to creep in already is that “edge” to daily life in a big city. the permanent undercurrent of tension through the shoulders. the tinge of cynicism that pervades thought. the weight of annoyance with inept transportation, shrill television, and overpriced goods. i’ve had minimal contact with the “outside world” thus far, but even this limited interaction has caused my forehead to wrinkle again, my mouth to set in a pressed line.

after living without this cloud for six months, it’s disheartening to be aware of this damper pressing down on my spirit.

it’s not that there are no annoyances or irritations when travelling. but this is a different kind of mindset – a subtle hardening of the arteries which seems to be necessary to urban living. it is so omnipresent that it’s only noticable by its absence. a toughening of the skin that protects, but also numbs feeling.

i wish i could leave this shell behind, but i know i’d never survive long without it. it’s just been so nice to feel truly free for all this time. and that’s probably what i will miss most.

1 Comment »

1 Comment

  • 1

    Comment by tanis

    25.10.2006 @ 10:07 am

    Can I leave my bit of the urban edge at your doorstep? I’ve been in London for the past 3 days for a training course and am so looking forward to returning to the Midlands. Being here sets me on edge like everytime I’ve been in NYC. For those who enjoy this type of living, I tip my hat to you.

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