365 days: Stranger in a strange land

I always dreamed of visiting London some day, when I was fortunate enough to win a scholarship to study in London University’s school of education, I was delighted . My residence for the year was in William Goodenough House.

As far as food goes I had a difficult time eating anything in the cafeteria, the food had a strange smell. I spent days without eating anything. Finally I bought some food and cooked in the small cooker we had.

My brother lived in London, he noticed I was losing weight, which scared him. He wanted me to stay in his apartment. I could not because the university was too far from where he lived.

I loved the city and visited some of the famous buildings, One of them was Madame Tussauds. I remember climbing the stairs, in the corner I saw two cops. Honestly I thought they were real people, I stopped and was about to ask something, when I heard a loud laughter behind me. ‘these are wax figures, they are not real. I was embarrassed and quietly walked up the stairs, and looked at everything around me.

I also visited the British Museum library. My friend wanted to look up something in the library. We had to get a library card. The librarian asked me why I was there. I just smiled, he then said, ‘O you are here with your friend.’

He gave me a card too. I watched the people in the library, they were so quiet, I was afraid to walk, for fear I will disturb their concentration.

I enjoyed travelling in the tube train, it’s so fast. I had a map which served as a guide if I wanted to visit somewhere other than the university.

I loved the city, there was so much to see and learn. Food was the only thing I did not enjoy.

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British Museum Library


6 thoughts on “365 days: Stranger in a strange land

  1. I loved London when I went there on a solo visit in 1994. I still love it, but I’m sure it has changed a little or a lot.

  2. Dear Ranu,

    Thank you for this detailed story of your journey, about London, the food, and everything!

    All good wishes,


  3. I’ve wondered how I might eat in England. The day-to-day food, as I’ve read or heard descriptions, is not enticing. But I would trade that challenge for the opportunity to be there. I’m glad you went and had a great time. And congratulations on the scholarship you won!

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