My name is Mushfique and you were a part of my life for about two years when I left home from Dhaka, Bangladesh to pursue my Masters. I must say my experiences with you were bittersweet but memories still leave me wanting for more.
For me, you were always my home away from home. Growing up, I’ve always idolised and dreamt of being a Londoner someday and when that day came my joy knew no bounds. I was a faux- Londoner: trying to fit in with the locals, trying hard to take up the culture and ending every sentence with ‘cheers’.
From day one, I loved everything that you had to offer to me: the tube, the buses, the pubs, the busy passers-by and of course, Her Majesty the Queen. God bless her soul! I voraciously took in all the culture, the fashion, the food, the knowledge and music of all things.
As time went by, I quickly grew busy with lectures and studies and forgot about you. As I moved out of my halls, I realised that the shiny city that never sleeps has an ugly side as well. I was working late at nights, waiting tables and and serving drinks to patrons. It was from that time that I had the real struggle. Working 12 hour shifts taught me some important lessons of life, something that I will remember for years to come. I am thankful to you, dear London!
As I went on from one house to the other in search of a cheaper place to live, I had the opportunity to come across some amazing people. Everyone had a story to tell and I sat down to listen to their experiences. Experience has been a great teacher and there’s something to learn from everyone only if you listen to them.
When it was time for me to end my hectic but amazing student life to return home, there I was alone in my room with two suitcases ready to be loaded in a cab. As I was getting ready to say my goodbyes to my flatmates, two years of London literally flashed by in a moment. I still remember that morning clearly: it was snowing heavily and I was massively drunk. Tears were running down my face and I was blank for a good few minutes. As I was getting late for the airport, I knew I had to get on to that cab.
Thank you, dear London, for giving me some of the best times of my life. I’ve been incredibly fortunate for all the experiences, both good and bad. I’ll see you soon, my love. Cheers!