Google maps’s street view is amazing. Today I spent some time walking around in old familiar places in London, finding places where I did grocery shopping, where I bought fish & chips, where I got good curry and so on. It took some time to find my whereabouts in such a large city as London, but eventually I was walking around in Hackney.
Reason for my walk on the memory lane was Idris Elba, who played Stringer Bell in the oh so classic The Wire. I saw him more recently in The Takers in a quintessential brainy criminal role – and realized from his IMDB-entry that he is originally from London. From Hackney. Would have never guessed, though in Takers he used his british accent to make his character’s caribbean roots more real.
Looking all those places from street view made me a little nostalgic and nauseating at the same time. I did not quite remember how dirty and rundown places in Hackney looked – and felt. But I liked my time in London, even though I am not a fan of british cousine or fitted carpets in toilets.
I loved Tate modern and other museums. I loved the metropolitan feel, but hated being broke all the time and money flying out of my pocket without really feeling anything concrete for that. Living standards feel so much higher in Helsinki, but I still miss London from time to time.
It is a shitty place, but it is London.