The price I pay (to live in London)

I checked my account recently, and it’s been bad before, but this was bad. In my account, I had, one whole pound. On the 7th of the month. 3 weeks before pay day. The aggravating thing is that I haven’t even splashed out, I’ve been careful since the start of the month, I haven’t treated myself to anything, apart from the cinema twice maybe. But since when is going to the cinema considered splashing out? Since living in London.

The frightening thing I have realised, is that people who have lived in London a long time, have forgotten that the prices we pay for pretty much anything down here are extortionate. When someone says they bought lunch for £9 “which isn’t bad”, or that they’ve managed to find a room for £600 a month in zone 6, I want to grab them by the hand, stick them on a train and tell them to see how many lunches and what size palace they can get for that up north.

When I was thinking of moving to London everyone had warned me about the prices, but they’d also said my salary would follow accordingly, at least enough to get by. Well my rent doubled, but my salary did not. Actually, it’s 2/3 of what I used to earn. “Think of your CV”, “you’ll have an amazing show reel”, is how this is justified. When my show reel can put food on my table, tell me that again.

That same day I cycled to the Olympic park to go for a swim in the Aquatics centre. I was reminded why all this stress is worth it for London. Because of these amazing places only a bike ride away? Maybe, but mainly because in London, anything can happen. I found a pound coin left behind in the locker I chose, and just like that my assets doubled.

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