Lately in London… Making a home away from home

Rosalita Capoldo, Herald Foreign Correspondent

A big part of going abroad is being able to get to know the city or town that you get to call home for the next 4-5 months. The lifestyle in London is very different than what I am used to. My life on the regular is either right on the water, calm and secluded Roger Williams, or my never bustling and nothing is open past 9 p.m. hometown.
However, London is nothing like that. When people say New York is the city that never sleeps, I question if they have even heard or seen pictures of London. Without fail, I can wake up at any hour of the morning and hear someone having a conversation outside my dorm. I see people stumbling in and out of bars, and fall asleep to the sweet sounds of cars beeping at pedestrians trying to push their luck at the cross walks.
I mean, for starters, London in and of itself is bigger than all of Scotland in its entirety. More people live in this city I’ve learned to call home than they do in an entire country! Add that to the rich and vibrant tourist culture, and you’ve got yourself a real bustling community.
On top of all that, though, there is so much more culture here. I feel like I am constantly meeting individuals from different countries, whereas back home I’m surrounded primarily by white New Englanders. I love that I am able to branch outside of my comfort zone and not only learn more about the different people and their lifestyles, but get a chance to show them mine as well. I have tried a wider variety of food in these two months that I have been here than in the rest of my 20 years combined.
Another difference between London and the United States is the rich and long history of London. In theory, the United States was just graduating potty training while London and the rest of England was graduating with a master’s. Everywhere I walk, I pass somewhere or something that echoes London’s culture, and it amazes me. To think that this city has been building itself for centuries, and I am such a small part of such a long story is mind boggling. London’s history brings such life to not only the city, but also to its people. It creates a deep-rooted sense of pride, and a long standing line of tradition that I don’t know if the United States has even begun to mimic.