Hello everyone! Greetings from London as I’m settling in my flat across the pond. I’m living in CAPA’s Richmond Court Housing nearby West Kensington Station off of Hammersmith Road. I live in a two person apartment with my friend from home and can’t believe how small the flat is. It consists of two rooms—a kitchen and bedroom—as well as a bathroom. It’s going to be tight quarters with little time to ourselves, but I’m very excited (with the exception of having to sleep in bunk beds). It’s about a ten minute walk from the underground station and I’m starting to become accustomed to taking public transportation to explore different parts of the city. In addition, my apartment is directly over a coffee shop and I live right around the corner from a Tesco grocery store. One of the biggest shocks is the food in London. The selection and variety of food at grocery stores is very limited and the frequency in which they restock the food is nowhere near as often as back home in the States. I really enjoy that the flat comes with a kitchen so I’m able to cook my own food and don’t have to rely on a meal plan. One aspect I didn’t expect was the size of the fridge, which was equivalent to a miniature sized fridge, and that the food is so much more fresh. The British grocery shop more often because the food spoils quicker there due to tighter food-handling restrictions on meat and produce.
Another challenge is that I live on the top floor of the apartment and there is no elevator. I’m sure that I’ll be in better shape having to walk up four flights of steps every time I come back from work or school. While it would be nice to have roommates from different universities and live with different people, I am relieved that I don’t have to learn to live with new people like freshman year of college. It’s nice to not have to worry about living with all those people so there are no issues with sharing food/groceries and sharing a bathroom. It’s been fun cooking breakfast with my friend before we leave for work and then cooking dinner after we come home. I’m hopeful that we won’t run into any problems with the flat and so far this experience has been incredible.