I am trying not to take living in London for granted, as I suppose we, Londoners and wannabe-Londoners are tempted to do when in rush to get things done and call it a day.
I will tell you how I use London as a comforter when my mood is low and I need a little pick me up.
For instance, getting myself in the tube and to Trafalgar Square for a couple of hours works wonders on me. I go to the National Gallery to my favourite section, the Post-Impressionist artists (rooms 33 to 46) and I simply look at the paintings that tickle my fancy. I am not an art expert, I just use it to disconnect my brain from my reality so I don’t have tips on how to look at a painting in order to get a/the message. I look at some of them quickly, while at others I stare for minutes. Sometimes a certain mix of colours or maybe the shapes catch my eye. It is never the same thing.
Usually, after a visit at the National Gallery I stop at the Waterstones in Trafalgar Square and have a hot drink and a nibble at the Costa Cafe upstairs. It’s the cosiest Costa Cafe in town, if you ask me. You are welcome to grab a book on the shelves to go with your coffee or read your own. I sometimes grab my notebook and write down something. Art makes my creative juices flow and it only makes sense to take advantage of the moment.
I wrap it up with a walk in the neighbourhood, if I have the energy to face the crowds, of course, and then I go home feeling recharged and grateful. High rents and pollution aside, living in London, with easy access to all that is great in this world, it is quite a blessing, you got to admit it.
P.S. National Gallery is in Trafalgar Square, at Charing Cross station. Admission is free for the permanent exhibitions.