We’ve been back in London since mid-January and although we were back, we weren’t quite settled. The soul-crushing process of job search has only just ended for me and I started working last week, we moved into an amazing flat that has been challenging to upkeep on one income and the hardest part was trying to resist the temptations of getting immersed into our new life in London.
Thankfully, I found a job in early April, with a start date of post Easter and that’s when we got back into the groove, starting with helping out fellow travelers. Mrs. FOMOist and I are advocates of Airbnb. We have had the pleasure of visiting some amazing places, that were made memorable because of where we stayed and who we met. We even did our honeymoon on Airbnb! So it was only fair that we shared our space and experiences with fellow travelers. We are pleased to share that we have listed our spare room on Airbnb and in the past month have successfully hosted 6 guests who have been an absolute joy to look after.
Now that I could stop fretting over jobs, we started with exploring our own backyard by hiring one of the Santander bikes and riding around London streets. Until we did that, we didn’t quite realise how close our flat is to everything! In the spirit of settling back, we also went and watched The Curious Incident of the dog at Night-time. I queued up at the theatre in the morning and secured £15 tickets for front row seats (luxuries of unemployment). The show ends in 3 June and I’m glad we caught it before it ends.
Mrs. FOMOist has been the sole breadwinner since we arrived. So we decided that before we both get stuck into a daily routine, we should take a trip. After consulting with trusting friends, we decided on exploring the coast of Cornwall. If you think that only the Mediterraneans have a patent on tight, sun-kissed (we got lucky with the weather) laned little towns, think again.
Cornwall has restored my faith in the English coastline. The beaches of Towan and Fistral, the sunset over the St Ives coast and the infamous Rick Steins fish and chip shop has given me renewed motivation to explore England as much as the rest of Europe.
On our way back from Cornwall, we decided to stop over in Southall. There is a massive Gurdwara (Sikh Temple) in Southall that we have always wanted to visit, but never mustered up the drive to suit on public transport for almost 2 hours to get there. Since we had a hire car, this was a perfect opportunity to check it off the list.
While I am not overly religious, I am proud of my heritage and the visit to the Gurdwara a definite booster. The multi level, high-ceiling, heated floor building where the Temple is, it’s a sight to behold. Then throw in freshly made chai, bhaji and curry, you instantly feel closer to the almighty!
In addition to the Gurdwara, I have always wanted to visit Southall due to its cultural diversity. It has one of the largest Indian and Pakistani population in London and when walking on the Broadway in Southall, it feels like you’re walking through the streets of New Delhi. The smell of panipuris being stuffed in punters gobs by the road side, the blaring Bollywood tunes blaring from the shop windows and the wide range of South Asian cuisine dragging your feet from one shop to another.
It is cultural havens like these that make me proud to call myself a Londoner again.