A cultural mosaic
I have lived in London for most of my life. The few years that I lived outside the city made me realise how much I depend on the place.
London is actually a conglomeration of microcosms. Villages (e.g. Hampstead, Chelsea, Kensington, and Richmond, to name but a few) and towns (e.g. Westminster, Southwark, and Greenwich) have merged. There are settlements of immigrants, who have now become Londoners: Bangla, Punjabi, Greek Cypriot, Jewish, Arab, Chinese, Koreans, Turkish Cypriots, Gujuratis, and the list goes on and on. Like individual gems in a complicated piece of jewelry, each microcosm shines on its own but together the effect is a spectacular glittering ensemble.
It is very difficult to summarise why London means so much to me. It is ever changing, and always intriguing. It is wonderful to live amongst one of the most diversified populations in the world. In the small dental practice where I work,my colleagues are Poles, Iranians, Koreans, Lithuanians, Kenyans, Indians, Ugandans, Malaysians, and from time to time Mongolians. Within a stone's throw of where I live I can buy milk from Pakistanis, hire a cab driven by an Afghan, buy olives from a Greek, drink coffee made by an Italian, buy Prosciutto presunto actually) sliced by a Portuguese, kebabs from a Turk, have felafels cooked by an Israeli or by a 'Mesopotamian', noodles prepared by a Chinese, sushi made by Japanese, eat tandoori prepared by an Indian, have a chat with a Nigerian,and have money changed by a Syrian. There are even a few English in London!
I work 3 days a week, and often become a tourist in my own town on some of the other days. The variety of things available to do to enjoy one's spare time is almost infinite. To name but a few: cinema, theatre, alternative theatre, eating, drinking, exhibitions, museums, street performances, river-boating, shopping, walking, or just sitting and watching the world pass by.
Often, I feel sorry for the genuine tourist. There is so much for him or her to choose and not enough time to do enough of it.
As someone well-known once said - "When a man is tired of London, he's tired of life"