Because I didn’t have the time until now. And because when visiting London, our most favorite thing was returning to our old hood, if only for the week. We stayed in a loft conversion (entry with stairs!!!) just two blocks up from our old flat on Regent’s Canal. And it was awesome. We booked through airbnb and our hosts had everything we needed. And we got to see what living in a loft conversion would be like. We would need an elevator. Luckily I have such a strong husband who was happy to carry Seb’s chair up and down the stairs. Location. Location. Location.
On our first night in town we were well rested from a long late afternoon nap so we went out for a walk to Hackney Central. Passing the bus stop we used to wait at to get to the hospital to see Seb. Passing the courthouse where his birth certificate was issued. Passing the library and Hackney Museum. Walking down quiet lane ways. Listening to the sirens and hum of traffic. All while munching on hot hot hot chips (big, fat french fries wrapped in paper, salted and splashed with vinegar). Delish. It felt good to be home. Because it still felt like home. In those early moments of a foggy, just landed mind. Pushing Sebastian in his stroller. Carrying Lula in the carrier. Searching for new shops/cafes and hoping our old favorites were still there. Thankful to see our favorite Vietnamese resturaunt, Tre Viet. Excited to see so many bike shops had popped up. Happy to discover a Sainsburys Local just down the street from us so we wouldn’t need to hop on a bus to the Tesco further up the road. The simple conveniences and the reasons why we decided to rent a flat (in our old hood) for a week rather than book a hotel in a part of London that didn’t feel like home.
Here we could walk to Broadway Market on the weekend.
Meet friends in Pub on the Park in London Fields.
Stroll along the canal at dusk.
Ride all the buses we knew the routes for. The 55, 48, 26.
Reminisce. And realize. That as lovely as it was – as much as we enjoyed being back in one of our most favorite places – we had also outgrown it. With our family of four. And the need for accessibility. Bittersweet. And full of memories.