Three months ago, after seven and a half years in London, I left. With nothing but a laptop and a suitcase of clothes, I flew to Berlin to start a new chapter in my life. Last week marked three months to the day that I arrived in Berlin, not a milestone by any means, but the gravity of it has made me somewhat homesick for the past week or so. When I lived in London, I rarely got homesick. It was still Britain, everything was familiar, I had friends, and I knew that if/when any pangs for the green, green grass of home kicked in, I could jump on a train or a coach and be home in under three hours.
This homesickness however, is different. Home is now a two hour flight then a three hour drive away, and because of that, I've been reflecting a lot on my time in London - the good, the bad, the incredibly ugly, but also the rewarding, the educational, the life-affirming and character-building things that have undeniably shaped and formed who I am today.
I was a bright-eyed and bushy-tailed 18 year-old from the Welsh valleys when I arrived in London, having never been away from home for longer than a week. Yes I was terrified, but my fear was overruled by excitement. I left London a more confident, determined and self-secure 26 year-old, and I can confidently say that I'd be a completely different 26 year-old now had I not done it.
So with that in mind, (and seeing as I'm in a reflective mood) I thought I'd tell you a little of what I learned in that time. Whether you currently live in London, used to live there or are planning to live there, or any city really - I hope this is of some use!