This photo was taken during one of my first ventures out in London just a year ago. Everything was so new and unfamiliar then but now the city feels like an old friend - it's home. I used to think like this - that LA and California were the end-all-be-all. As much as I wanted to travel it never crossed my mind to actually live anywhere else. "LA has it all, why would I leave?" I'd always say. And between the different landscapes available within a thirty-minute to three hour drive (beaches, deserts, mountains, wine country) and the weather, it does have a lot. But a year away has taught me a lot, too. It is possible to fall in love with other cities the way you love your hometown. It is possible to stay connected with friends and family even though you're thousands of miles away. And it is possible to envision a life much different from what you always thought was certain. At the risk of causing an uproar with my friends and my sister (love you guys!) I no longer feel the definitive pull to ultimately settle down in LA. At first it was scary to think that I was letting go but then it got exciting to feel so open to whatever may come. My perception of settling down changes with every day that passes and with every expat that I meet or read about. Take this couple, for instance, who sold all of their possessions to travel the world for one year and are still at it four years later. I can totally relate to the initial pain of letting go of your favorite things and all that is familiar but once you're out, you're out, and you know what....it feels pretty damn good.
Tomorrow will be our last full day in London before a night in Paris for Joe's birthday and then moving out on Tuesday. I can't believe our time in this awesome town has come to an end, it was truly one incredible year. Now it's on to jungles, beaches, and eating so many noodles that they start coming out of our ears!
p.s. amazing how this photo stuck with me as inspiration for my blog header design. totally wasn't intentional!