|London; more or less the same as last time I visited.|
We've been living in Cumbria for 18 months and last week saw me revisiting my life in the South East complete with London commute. I spent 22 years living and working in the South East and a fair chunk of that time commuting into various parts of London so, had it changed or was it still the way I remembered it?
More people, less chat
|Rush hour commute.|
More clothes, less colour.
I don't mean the people of the south actually wear more clothes, but there's generally a greater variety than I see in South Cumbria where outdoor clothes reign supreme (regardless of whether anyone has any intention of heading for the fells). Black is the new black down south. Walking through the City recently I witnessed several thousand people spewing out of Cannon Street station and it was as if all the colour had drained out of the world. Does everyone wear black because they're miserable or are they so miserable because they wear black? A couple of daredevils were wearing grey; they must be in marketing.
|Small details, interesting histories.|
More cars, less patience.
|Great Gable on a sunny Cumbrian morning.|
More sun, less time to enjoy it.
Much as I love to argue the fact the Cumbria is really not as wet and rainy as everyone seems to think, there's no getting away from the statistics; it's one of the wettest counties in the UK. And the South East really does get the most sun. But with the long working hours and commutes, people seem to have less time to enjoy it. In the UK we work some of the longest hours in the EU and that can't be good for our health. And although the South East gets less rain, when it does come they whinge about it a lot more. I'm not saying we all jump for joy when the rain clouds gather, there's just more of an acceptance that it's part of the deal when living up here. Plus we're better kitted out to deal with it. We have to be.
More historical buildings, less appreciation of them.
|Easy not to see things you pass every day.|
The whole trip was a great reminder for me about how easy it is to take your surroundings for granted. Something I hope I never do in the Lake District.