I could not have asked for a more welcoming and comfortable experience my first week in London. Shannon and my new roommates graciously made me feel right at home, and we got along ‘splendidly’ (thought I would throw in a little British lingo for you) from day one.
I did, however, make an enemy as quickly as I made friends with my new house mates and colleagues; the lock on the front door of 54 Hereford street. When I arrived, the lock was broken and was on the landlord’s fix-it list, yet it had not been fixed when my first Saturday in this great city arrived. Due to several different circumstances, I spent the day wandering around and exploring London alone. Initially I was a little disappointed that no one would be joining me in this venture, but I quickly got over it and had a wonderful day – one of my favorite days that I’ve had here to date. I went to Covent Garden and looked around the Covent Garden Market, strolled along the Victoria Embankment, and did some serious people-watching at a corner cafe. Once evening rolled around I decided to hop on ‘the tube’ and head back toward my flat for some dinner. By the time I made it back, it was dark and I was truly about to use the bathroom in my pants – perhaps this is too much information, but it is an important detail of the story. So I’m doing the ‘pee-pee’ dance outside of our door and I truly cannot get it unlocked – an event that had already happened on NUMEROUS occasions prior to this particular instance. So I can’t stand there any longer without going to the bathroom and I remember that Cathers had said that the pub around the corner – The Carpenter’s Arms – was a nice one that they enjoyed, so I decided I could go there and use their bathroom and grab a beer. Well, Cathers was right and it was an enjoyable place so I ended up staying and chatting with the bartenders and other Saturday night pub-goers, and I eventually made some buddies (it did however, take me much longer to do so than it would have in TX). I then decided it was time to head home and confront the evil lock, but lo and behold I lost that battle once again. I’m sure by now you’re thinking I must be somewhat of a challenged individual, but I promise you the lock was the one who was challenged. So, it’s cold and I don’t want to stand outside any longer so I go BACK to the Carpenter’s Arms. My new found friends welcomed me with open arms (no pun intended) and I finally called the newly departed roommate Hannah. She was busy moving out during all of this and I did not know her very well at all at this point so I was hesitant to bother her but I had no choice. She was, of course, happy to help and came to the Carpenter’s Arms and met me for a beer. We then got to chat and learned more about each other, so maybe that was the intended purpose in this small disaster! Hannah unlocked the door that night and my enemy was laid to rest soon after. While the evil lock caused me much distress, it also led to some new friendships and a funny story. As a result, I am thankful for that stupid lock ‘opening some new doors’ for me even though it wouldn’t open the door to my own flat.