Taking on London for the first time

 
Big Ben on Dyrogue

EN:

If we had met 10 years ago, you would have known this about me after our very first conversation..

I was irrevocably in love .. with England.

I simply had this totally idyllic picture of this place in my mind.. So distant, so inaccessible on an island in Europe.

It's hard to tell a child that the real world is not the same as that of his imagination.

It's hard to make him understand that the magic of a land lies in the experiences you have in it, that It's the people who color it and the customs that give it value.

It's hard to tell a child as stubborn as me.

 

But what did I know?

One thing only. - I had to get there.

I wanted this more than anything on earth.

 

I thought I'd fit in right away. That, arrived in England, things would work out by themselves. That I would wear a uniform with a navy blue skirt and white socks. That I'd get their royalty like accent in a matter of days. That I'd meet my future husband and that he'll resemble Hue Grant. That I'll surely get a role in Harry Potter.

 

The attitude of my parents passed quickly from tenderness to exasperation.

"Pleeease! Let's go on a trip, will we? Please!"

"Diana, I told you a thousand times that England is rainy all day long and you hate rain."

"No, I it won't rain! I promise!"

 

( It didn't. We got lucky.  )

 

RO:

Daca ne-am fi cunoscut acum 10 ani, ai fi stiut asta dupa prima conversatie..

Am fost indragostita irevocabil de.. Anglia.

Avem pur si simplu o imagine idilica, inventata, asupra acelui loc atat de indepartat, atat de inaccesibil, pe o insula din Europa.

E greu sa-i spui unui copil ca lumea reala nu e aceeasi cu cea din imaginatia lui.

E greu sa-l faci sa inteleaga ca magia unui taram sta in experientele pe care le ai in el, oamenii care-l coloreaza si obiceiurile care ii dau valoare.

E greu sa-i spui unui copil atat de incapatanat ca mine.

 

Insa ce stiam eu?

Un lucru doar. - Trebuia sa ajung acolo.

Imi doream asta mai mult ca orice.

 

Aveam senzatia ca ma voi integra din prima. Ca ajunsa in Anglia, lucurile se vor rezolva de la sine. Ca ma vor imbraca intr-o uniforma cu fustita bleumarin si sosete albi. Ca voi prinde din mers accentul lor atat de aristocratic. Ca-mi voi cunoaste viitorul sot, ca va semana cu Hue Grant si ca voi primi un rol important in Harry Potter.

 

Atitudinea alor mei a trecut repede de la induiosare la exasperare.

"Te rooooog! Hai sa mergem intr-o excursie, vrei? Te rog!"

"Diana, ti-am spus de o mie de ori ca in Anglia ploua toata ziua si nu ti-ar placea."

"Nu, promit ca nu ploua! Promit!"

 

( Nici n-a plouat, am avut noroc. )

The years have gone by and to my own surprise, I eventually started letting go of this dream.

My preoccupations changed, so did the destinations I was dying to conquer.

Paris stole the apple of my eye. Romance took over my life and France was making its way to my ideals.

Then, after a while, I let go of that too. I traveled a lot and I started aspiring to visit places less touristic and further away, awaiting to be impressed by the bigger differences and longer journeys.

However, what you once loved remains with you forever.

And I truly loved the mere idea of London, for at least a quarter of my life.

 

Last week I took the first step on the island for the first time.

I know for many of you it's no big deal, but I also know that for many others it's still something unthinkable.

Like myself, until now.

 

Although it hasn't been a matter of possibilities in recent years, but rather of occasion and chance.

I needed company!

Everything lined up this time, for a perfectly nostalgic holiday. I got on the plane with my girlfriends from my school years.

Girls with which I spent breaks between classes, attended balls wearing no make up and exchanged notes before tests.

Iuli, Ralu, Ami.

Dia, my soul mate, is the only one that's missing.

Au trecut anii si spre mare mea mirare, mi-a trecut si fantezia asta.

Preocuparile mi s-au schimbat, la fel si destinatiile mult-visate.

Parisul mi-a acaparat orizontul. Romantismele incepeau sa-si faca aparitia, iar Franta sa-si faca loc in idealurile mele.

Incet-incet am trecut si peste asta, am calatorit mult si am am inceput sa aspir spre locuri mai putin turistice, asteptand sa fiu impresionata de diferente cat mai mari si calatorii cat mai indepartate.

Cu toate acestea, ceea ce ai iubit odata iti ramane pentru totdeauna.

Iar eu am iubit simpla idee de Londra pentru cel putin un sfert din viata mea.

 

Saptamana trecuta am facut primul pas pe insula, pentru prima data.

Stiu ca pentru multi dintre voi e o nimica toata, dar stiu si ca pentru multi altii e ceva inca de neconceput.

Asa a fost si pentru mine, pana acum.

 

Desi in ultimii ani nu a fost o problema de posibilitati, ci de ocazie.

Aveam nevoie de companie!

Iar ca si cum toate s-ar fi alineat perfect pentru o vacanta de dragul nostalgiei, am urcat pe avion cu prietenele mele cele mai bune de la scoala.

Fetele cu care imi petreceam pauzele, colindam balurile nemachiate si schimbam fituicile inainte de teste.

Iuli, Ralu si Ami.

Formatia nu a fost completa. Dia, sufletul meu pereche, e singura care lipsea.

I never would have believed this, but a week with the girls really changed me.

I know, I know, you may think I'm exaggerating, but I'm not.

Let me explain why:

I'm that girl who "always got along better with boys".

I'm the kind that has a good friend in which I invest all emotions and all my time without a trace of regret. I pour out my soul in a pair of ears hidden behind long black hair. There is no word that I can not say nor a subject that I can not tackle with her.. But I'm like this only with her. (She's Dia.)

I searched for real friends in the men whom I choose as partners. I managed to do so and moreover to get exactly what I wanted, maybe even more than that, from Andrei.

But for the rest of the world I still have a high wall of protection.

This blog helped me a lot. I managed to adjust the opacity of that wall and let people look at me from a different angle, much closer than what I was used to.

But the trip with the girls really inspired me.

It was like a window open for an experience that I've never tasted before.

Nu as fi crezut niciodata, dar o saptamana cu fetele chiar m-a schimbat.

Stiu, stiu, poate pare ca exagerez, dar nu o fac.

Sa-ti explic de ce:

Eu sunt tipa care "s-a inteles mereu mai bine cu baietii".

Sunt genul care are o prietena buna in care investeste totul fara urma de regret. Imi vars sufletul intr-o pereche de urechi ascunse dupa un par lung si negru. Nu este cuvant pe care sa nu-l pot rosti si tema pe care sa n-o pot aborda cand sunt cu ea.. Dar sunt asa numai si numai cu ea. ( Ea e Dia. )

Am cautat prieteni adevarati in barbatii pe care-i alegeam ca parteneri. Am si reusit, de altfel, sa obtin intocmai ce-mi doream, poate chiar mai mult de atat, de la Andrei.

Dar cu restul lumii am un zid inalt de protectie.

Blogul m-a ajutat mult. Am reusit sa-i reglez opacitatea si sa las oamenii sa ma priveasca intr-un alt fel, mult mai apropiat decat cu ce am fost obisnuita.

Insa excursia cu fetele m-a inspirat cu adevarat.

A fost ca un geam deschis spre o experiente pe care nu o mai gustasem.

Friends, clicks and people have circled around me since forever, but they never filled in for the long after noons in our king size bed from our hotel in London. We were braided in a conversation so natural and so good willing, I never would have imagined.

Our rooms exploaded with make-up products, boots, furs and croissants right after we arrived.

I laughed so hard this vacation that I honestly can't remember how long it's been since I've had such a juicy share of laughter. It was the after math of our unslept nights and packed days, we were tired and we were acting ridiculouse.

I then noticed we couldn't be more different. Starting to the way we connect and show emotions, to the way we make sens, to our facial traits or to our future plans.

Imagine us just like this:

A compass. North, South, East, West.

I can't make up my mind which one I'd pick out for myself,

I guess I'll just let you chose which you think suits me best.

Prieteni, gasti si cunostiinte m-au inconjurat intotdeauna, dar nu au compensat pentru dupa amiezile in patul matrimonial din hotelul nostru, unde ne inghensuiam noi patru, impletite atat de natural in conversatie.

Camerele au explodat cu produse de machiaj, cizme, blanite si croissante imediat dupa ce am ajuns.

Am ras vacanta asta cum nu-mi amintesc sa o mai fi facut de mult. Ras de oboseala, de ridicol si de incantare.

Am sesizat ca nu putem fi firi mai diferite. Incepand cu manifestarea sentimentelor, la felul de a rationaliza, la trasaturile fetei, pana la planurile de viitor.

Imagineaza-ti asa:

Un compas. Nord, Sud, Est, Vest.

Inca nu pot hotara care punct cardinal m-ar defini pe mine,

te las pe tine sa alegi.

Instarogue

My Instagram Feed offers some insight on this story, find me @dianarogo.


I visited so much that I broke my rubber boots. (Geez, that I really did not expect to happen.)

We filmed each other playing and amusing ourselves in busy intersections.

We made friends, we got to know the English and eat like the English.

We visited modern art gallerys and we sat down in a dark room to capture a story about blind people and the way they perceive reality.

We let deep emotions sink in.

We drank wine on the 40th floor overlooking the city. We went out in clubs and we became friends with the DJ.

We kept shopping to the minimum - not to let the boutiques take away too much of our precious time in London. The city is too big and overflowing with things to see, that there was simply not enough time to get it all.

We got as good as no sleep, with a mere 2-3 hours per night. By day we walked from one corner to another, stopping only at cafes. In the evening we went out to taste the nightlife. With each nice figure that came in our way, we'd stop and take the chance to make sme conversation.

And yes, we stopped at ev-e-ry window with cute displays.

Look what we found:

Am vizitat pana mi-am rupt cizmele de cauciuc. ( Geez, chiar nu ma asteptam sa se intample asta. )

Ne-am filmat jucandu-ne si amuzandu-ne in intersectii aglomerate.

Ne-am facut prieteni, am cunoscut englezi si am mancat englezeste.

Am vizitat galerii de arta moderna si ne-am asezat pe jos intr-o camera obscura sa surprindem un material despre oamenii orbi si felul in care acestia percep realitatea.

Am permis emotilor sa ne cuprinda.

Am baut vin la etajul 40 cu priveliste asupra orasului. Am iesit in Club si ne-am imprietenit cu Dj-ul.

Am facut si putintel shopping, dar am evitat sa ne lasam prada magazinelor, care ne furau de timpul prea scurt pentru un oras atat de mare, cu atat de multe lucruri de vazut.

Am dormit infim. 2-3 ore pe noapte, ziua umblam dintr-un colt in altul, poposind numai la cafenele. Seara ieseam in oras sa cunoastem si viata de noapte, iar cu fiecare figura amabila, profitam sa schimabm doua cuvinte.

 

Si da, ne-am oprit la fi-e-ca-re vitrina cu lucuri dragalase.

Uite ce am gasit:

On saturday night, before heading back to our hotel to start putting on make up on each other, going to Ministry of Sound, we popped in a venue for a glass of wine.

The place was italian, in Soho.

Going to our seats, we noticed what mouth watering food other customers had gotten.

We couldn't resist and orderd a pizza too. Before leaving, the staff brought us dessert on the house and I can still remember the exact taste of that poudered tiramisu on to tip of my silver spoon.

If you're in London, I recommend you go to Soho Centrale.

And to Sushi Samba at the 40th floor, to Sketch and of course, to the Tate.

Sambata seara, inainte sa ne indreptam spre cazare sa ne machiem una pe alta pentru Minstry of Sound, ne-am oprit la un pahar de vin.

Localul a fost cu specific italienesc, in Soho.

Trecand printre oameni vedeam mesele pline ale oaspetilor veniti inaintea noastra.

Nu ne-am abtinut si am comandat si o pizza. Inainte sa plecam am primit deserturi din patea casei, iar gustul tiramisului inca mi-l pot imagina perfect, pudrat cu cacao intr-un varf de lingurita.

Daca treceti prin Londra, Soho Centrale chiar merita.

De asemenea si Sushi Samba la etajul 40, la Sketch si bine inteles la Tate.

Between the turbulences on the plane back home, I got to a conclusion that still makes me smile.

Seriously, I'm literally grinning in front of the laptop right now and I'm on the brink of spilling my drink in my lap.

London was absolutely fascinating and it rose to the expectations I established a decade ago.

And I guarantee that they're not low at all, they involve magic and elegance,

and it seems to me that this is exactly what London has shown me.

I can't wait to go back and already I miss the girls, gone with their studies.

Printre turbulentele avionului spre casa, am tras o concluzie care ma face si acum sa zambesc.

Da, ranjesc la propriu in fata laptopului, la un pas de a-mi varsa paharul de must in poala, haha.

Londra a fost absolut fascinanta si s-a ridicat la asteparile mele, chiar si ele stabilite cu un deceniu in urma.

Si iti garantez ca sunt inalte, implica magie si eleganta,

iar asta mi-se pare ca e exact amprenta pe care a lasat-o asupra mea.

Abia astept sa ma intorc cu urmatoarea ocazie si deja le duc dorul fetelor, plecate la studii in departare.