We all have that one place that speaks to us. Maybe it’s a place that you’ve travelled to before – or maybe you dream of going one day. For me, that place is London, England. There is just something about it. I visited for the first time when I was ten or eleven. Since then, I’ve returned five times…. and every time it is just as memorable as the last.
The first time I went, my entire family stayed in a tiny flat. My brother, sister, and I all shared one very cramped room. It didn’t matter, though. We were just excited to be there. It was our first trip to Europe and we were in awe of the fact everything was so different than it was at home. During the day, we visited local attractions like Big Ben, Buckingham Palace, and the London Dungeon. At night, we stayed in the flat and watched British television. It was like being transported into a totally new world.
It was several years before I returned. Since my last visit, though, I had become obsessed with British culture. I would watch British music videos and TV shows online. I had the Union Jack hanging up in my room. I just couldn’t get enough! That trip, I was more excited than ever to return to London. I even came prepared with a list of CDs and singles to bring back with me.
That second trip was one of the best I have ever been on. Why? I was back in my favourite place. Even better, was the fact that I went to a concert by my favourite British pop star, Gareth Gates. (My dad had pulled some massive strings to snag a pair of tickets to the sold-out show.) Even now, I look back on that trip and feel like the luckiest girl in the world.
I always vowed to return to London, though it was a while before I actually did. Gone were the days of tourist attractions, though. I was more interested in shopping, concerts, and going to West End plays. While my interests had changed somewhat, I still had an incredible time. After that trip, I returned the following year, and the year after that as well. Each time, I tried to have a special experience lined up: a book signing, a show, or a new attraction to see. I desperately wanted every single trip there to be unique. London became my happy place.
Even though I haven’t been able to return to London for a few years now, I still dream of the day that I will. There is so much that I miss about it: the people, the places, the culture, and most importantly, the atmosphere. I think that is the best part about travelling to a city or country that you love. Somehow you fall head over heels about every little thing it has to offer.
While I may not be heading back to London anytime soon, I know that I will. When you truly love a place, you’ll do anything to get back there again! London is my favourite place in the world. What is yours?