I am still getting used to London. I’m still getting used to its maze-like streets, its people’s accents, and its massively expensive currency. Its not that I’m intimidated by the city – I have no problem zipping around on the tube, navigating rush hour, or walking back and forth from my house to the neighboring blocks to run errands, buy groceries. At least, not yet. I’ve gotten my bank debit card, bought a cell phone, obtained all necessary toiletries, and even, seen my first London dance performance, Akram Khan + Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui’s Zero Degrees (more about them in another post). Yet I still feel unsettled. Even though I’m surrounded by people, I feel strangely alone. My room, filled with my stuff as it is, still looks like a hotel room. Hopefully this will all change once school starts.
I live in a house in North Kensington, in the west side of London, a block away from Lispa. The house is owned by a lovable but scatterbrained Argentine artist, Marisa. Marisa is in her early sixties, and she still dyes her hair bright red. She lives in the house, but is out of town half the time, traveling the world while visiting her friends, doing art. She just got back yesterday from a trip to Wales. The house is small, littered here and there with artwork and bric-a-brac, including a bunch of sculptures of huge lips. In the bathroom upstairs theres a sculpture of a naked butt. I promise, I promise – there’ll be pictures. Also in the house is Rob, a British lad who studies drama, and Oskar, a phd student from Spain who does history. There’s Richard, whos older, but he will be moving out in two weeks. They’re all very nice people, especially Rob, but I do wish for more female company. Rob’s girlfriend, Iris, is visiting for the week from the Netherlands, so thats been great. We eat breakfast together, and the other day, she took me to a pound store to get cheap sheets and blankets. Marisa has three tabby cats – Mina, Bebe, and Chiquita. Mina is the mom, and she squacks like a duck whenever shes hungry. Shes like a crotchety old woman. Whenever she squacks, I’d make faces at her, and that cracks me up. I am so easily amused.