Looking back, looking forward

Today’s post is all about what I will miss here in London and what I am looking forward to in Sweden.

Firstly, what I will miss:

London 2
London’s sheer London-ness;  its red buses, pillar boxes, tube signs, Trafalgar Square, Paddington Bear, Tower Bridge, the Shard…  I’ll miss how well I know the sights and sounds of this fantastic city, that has been my home for all but 4 years of my life.  Places like Dulwich Village, where I got married, Peckham where I went to school and Dulwich Hospital where I was born will always bring back special memories.  Well, I can’t actually remember being born…but you know what I mean!

Original and unpredictable things my students say: “Miss is a fanfare a song about fans?”

Nice conversations with my students and their parents.  I have been teaching brass and piano for 7 years now and in that time I have seen my students grow and develop.  Some of my students really stand out for their commitment and colourful character.  I will miss them.  When confronted with the news I was leaving, one of my private students was so disappointed, she asked if she could still have trumpet lessons via Skype from Sweden!  I think my students will miss me too.

Diverse and vibrant mix of cultures in London.  Having people from so many different nationalities living, working and studying alongside each other in one city often leaves me lost in wonder at the variety of life.  I’ll miss being able to pop to my local Turkish shop for fruit and veg or stroll to my nearest Oriental supermarket for wasabi or sample pizzas at the Italian restaurant down the road.

Our language.  I know how to speak it!!  I can express opinions and ideas.  I can philosophise and discuss existential angst.  I can recite poetry and plays, quote song lyrics and films.  In Swedish I can say my name and tell the time.   Bit of way to go before I’m fluent!

Neighbours and neighbourhood.  Despite living in a massive city which is often said to feel anonymous, my neighbours in Archway are surprisingly friendly: there’s the unemployed poetry-loving locksmith who wants to write my star-sign profile, the quirky inventor of apps who loves to tend our garden and the friendly retired couple next door who look after parcels for us.  Even our postman stops for a chat!!

Now, what I am looking forward to:


Slightly easier mornings.  I know many of you get up earlier, but my husband and I currently awake at 5:45am and are in school by 8am.  The combination of early starts and commuting for 13-15 hours a week does not a happy Anna make.  Yes, there will be early starts in Urshult, but my commute will be down one flight of stairs!  I am also looking forward to the simplicity of working in 1 location, rather than 7.  No more forgetting something important in one place and having to wait a week before I get it back:-)

Weight lifted off my shoulders.  Rather than journeying around London with a heavy trumpet bag plus music and other paraphernalia on my back, I will be bag-free!   My back and shoulders will be much happier:-)

Expanded living space!  We are moving to a MASSIVE property with roughly 10,000 square feet of living space and guest rooms.  Currently we reside in a 1 bedroom flat and, when the kids are with us at the weekends, there are 4 of us sharing about 500 square feet.  We will go from a cosy space in London to spacious cosiness in Urshult!

Different scenery.  Urshult Hotell is situated on the banks of Lake Asnen, which is truly stunning (see photo above) It makes a nice swimming spot too!

Entrepreneurship.  I love the idea we will be owning our own business and building it up together, watching it grow and take shape.  We plan to expand into events and are full of ideas for yoga retreats, cookery weekends, wedding receptions, dance weekends and more.  Our creativity and willingness to try new things unfolds more and more as the vision for our hotel business blossoms.

New skills.  This new venture brings with it so many opportunities to learn new skills and brush up on old ones such as book-keeping, marketing, cleaning, driving, customer service, vision-building.  Bring it on!




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