I'd forgotten how much I loved London like this, the cold and the dark. It's seem contrary to my innate dislike of the cold but it's gotten to the point now that I wear loads of layers without fear of overheating later and once I'm wrapped up in a thick scarf and gloves, it doesn't feel that bad at all. It's only been one day since the clocks went back and it just feels different somehow. The world is muted and you can sense the change in the way people live, everyone turning inwards and settling in for the long stretch of winter.
I moved back in with F on Saturday and I can't think of a more lovely way to spend my last couple of weeks here. It's comfortable and I love this area, in all my tourist romanticism. I'll be walking to work, and though I know there will be horrible days of cold and rain, it's a beautiful route and just such a snapshot of London that I'm glad for the opportunity to do it. And I'll try to remember that when I lose feeling in my face because the wind is blowing straight off the north pole.
It's been a pretty hectic couple of days - today has felt weirdly warped and out of proportion. I watched the clocks change last night at a Halloween party with Abbi and co, a lovely night with fun people, where I did my best living dead impersonation. Slept on their couch because of course it would be the day I'd just moved out of my old place and the thought of navigating night buses at a chilly 2am (new 2am) was entirely too much. That was only the tail end of festivities as Friday was quite a big night out for a work friend's leaving do (boo) that played out across many places, on many cold streets, and through some dubious decisions. At least I managed to get the last train home that time. And there was Thursday, more impromptu festivities with work friends. My scarf smells of cigarettes and aftershave.
This is what London does to you. The thought of leaving becomes harder every day. But is it only because I've decided to go that it now suddenly seems so impossible? Viewed through goggles of premature nostalgia, everything is somehow more amazing, and everything seems like a good idea.
Life would be better if I could think about things less. Turn off my brain and just let things fall as they may. What does introspection help anyone, anyway?
Back in Sydney, summer awaits. Family, and (of course) my puppy. A challenging new job. Old friends. New friends. Adventure.
And I want it, I do. But my heart aches at the thought of leaving all this behind. I suppose in a way it's better, better to leave when I feel good about things, rather than hating it all and being driven out by misery. So that's why I just want to make the most of these last few weeks, enjoy myself and not worry so much. There really isn't time for all this thinking.
You cannot always be torn in two.
In other news, went to Belfast with Lizzie, which was great. And went on the Harry Potter Studio Tour with Abbi, which was, hell I'll say it, magical - as you would expect. Life went on - I watched films, Abbi fed me delicious things regularly and I started a Dance with Dragons, leading to numerous moments of near book-throwing frustration.
Today I sat in cafes reading Sylvia Plath's poetry and probably looking pretentious. I read a brilliant short story in the New Yorker called The Semplica-Girl Diaries and wrote maybe a page and a half of my own stuff. And that is one of the great things about staying here, in particular, everything becomes much more writerly.
I'm a couple of chapters into Gillian Flynn's Gone Girl, this month's book club book (for Friday, so I should really hurry up), and I am really enjoying the writing so far. So yes. Tea, book, early night. Perfect Sunday evening wind down.
Music: Me vs Maradona vs Elvis - Brand New