London can be a lonely place.
Yes, Samuel Johnson, you are right: “When you are tired of London, you are tired of life”. But that seems to be the point, it is a tiredness with life and relentless London living that can drive you into a downward spiral. It is not that there is nothing to do, and it is not even boredom that makes people lonely, it is almost there being too much of everything. If you live on your own and work freelance, despite being in one of the busiest cities in the world, you could easily get through a day with very little human contact. We don’t realise how important communication and socialising, even on a minor scale such as acknowledging someone when they smile at you or, dare I say it, responding with a smile, are.
Walking home tonight, a cyclists light fell off as she passed me. Naturally I picked it up for her and helped her find the rogue battery that had managed to escape. I don’t see this as super hero behaviour, but she seemed to find it astonishing that a.) I could be that kind b.) I could be English
I was disheartened by our reputation, and as I carried on my journey I saw it connecting to a very British way of life. We have the ability to be very proud of our country, but only, it seems, when the going is good; the Olympics, Andy Murray winning Wimbledon. Where is the support when the going is tough, when we need it most. Your country needs you through thick and thin, not just to jump on a website and write damning comments when someone makes a mistake. We all make mistakes and it’s hard enough getting through life with them, without millions of people reminding you and judging you for it. Like the people in our country, we have lost the confidence to call ourselves Great without some kind of evidence. the Americans do it all the time, and why not? They are great. So are we; the Americans are only united, the Britons are the Great ones. And if we believed that a little more, and took the time to acknowledge people and just be a little more human, London would seem a far friendlier place.