I wrote this today, sat in a coffee shop in town, on what has been a good and a bad day. My head's muddled and I haven't eaten. But I like this. Buying a new notebook was worth it, even if it is a bit on the bulky side.
I love this city, its hustle, its bustle, the noise, the energy. How it blends the old with the new, the ancient and modern. Museums and libraries, churches and schools.
Houses sit amongst green while the traffic roars past. Sirens scream and taxis twist past buses - red and lumbering. People dash across the street, heedless of traffic lights. It's invariably raining, but no one cares, umbrellas aloft, people weave and whizz along the pavement.
Walking along the street, there's books on a table outside a shop. £5 a book, I won't buy, but I will browse, note some old friends, and a guide to New York - opposite, sister city, city that never sleeps. This city, not asleep, dormant maybe, sparking into life, crackling with its music, sights, smells - petrol and grass, curry and coffee.
Steam rises from my tea, a scent of peppermint. And to think I almost stayed in, where it's warm and watched TV.
The beat of the city, a pulse all its own, echoing forever, through the centuries, since before Londinium, since before it had a name. Following the flow of a river, Old Father Thames.
A sense of home, despite its many faces and voices. Stretching across the world, hailing from everywhere, settling here. Drawn by that majestic chaos, that giant roused.
The wind pushes back, the Londoner strides, head bowed but not deterred. There are places to go, faces to see, carved out of stone or wreathed in friendly smiles.
City of miracles - anything can happen.
My city. Home.