When I fell in love with England: Guest Blogger

- Lauren,

Inside the dimly lit cabin, people around me stirred in their sleep. This was a routine flight for some but not for me. My stomach twisted with butterflies as twinkling lights appeared below. Rows of them stretched down dark highways. It was early in the morning and I wandered, where were people going at this hour? A new day was about to begin in Britain. Children would catch the bus to school. Trains would fill with suits and newspapers. And for the first time, I would step foot out of Africa.

I wanted to text a picture of the lights to my boyfriend and family. I wanted to share the exhilaration with someone. But it was my special moment, tired but wide awake in a plane in the sky. I pulled my blanket up to my chin and gazed outside with a stupid smile on my face. I wandered if Heathrow would look like it does in the movies. Would people be hugging hello and goodbye in tears? Would I be able to find my friend in the airport? Would I have enough money to last two weeks? I couldn’t wait to taste Starbucks coffee and explore ancient cobbled streets. I wanted to wander through Harrods and Hamleys and fulfill every other cliche you could think of.

The cabin lights were suddenly turned on and air hostesses began wheeling trays of plastic plates down the aisles. Babies woke up crying and people stood up to stretch and straighten their clothes. As I slipped on my shoes and searched for my toothpaste, I thought, I love England already.

This was August 2005. I fell madly in love with England and returned to live for a year. I would have stayed, visa permitting. Thank you for sharing this memory with me.

Lauren resides in Durban, South Africa and is the author of the blog Glossary, a digital scrapbook on all things fashion, travel and inspiration. You can read more of her work here.

opening photo  – breakinthecode.com

  1. Vanessa says:

    I went to London and I loved it there!!Goodluck sweety:)


  2. Bobby says:

    You just described EXACTLY the way I felt.
    Have not lived there (yet) but have been there four times and am so in love with it.
    Lovely post!

  3. Roxanne says:

    I’ve been once as a young kid and I so badly want to go back! Lovely piece, Gloss girl

  4. Harriet says:

    Love Lauren’s writing and love England so this article gets my vote!

  5. Lize Kay says:

    You rock, lady! You make me want to move to England…

  6. Elle says:

    Great post Lauren!

    I enjoyed my December holiday there a few years back and will def visit again, but will never survive a whole year in dear old England :)

  7. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Tim Burke, Lauren. Lauren said: I wrote about the moment I fell in love with England for a comp. There may also be a pic of me in a cringey pink combo! http://bit.ly/ahNMXj […]

  8. Mark says:

    Very moving post, Lauren! Wish I was there right now. You have my vote!

  9. PJ says:

    England misses you to!

  10. Bronwyn says:

    Love the way you explain things, great post!!

  11. Chantel says:

    Beautifuly eiscriptive piece, makes me want to travel sooo bad! Good luck xx

  12. Cat says:

    Love England! Love her people and all the beauty of her land. love Lauren’s writing ability and the feelings they evoke. XX Cat

  13. Bridget says:

    Great Article La! There’s something so magical about traveling especially to a place that involves coats, coffee and snuggles! haha! Miss you lots! Brij xox

  14. Tami says:

    Totally spot on, England is so full of magic and I too fell in love with it right away :) For that reason you have my vote!

  15. NIkki says:

    I wanna go to England. :(

  16. Kathy says:

    Wow! Great post La….

    Good Luck!

    K x

  17. Bev says:

    beautifully captured! triggered happy memories of when we shared such a moment together a few years later xx

  18. Lauren says:

    Guys and girls, thank you so much for the lovely feedback! It really warms my heart. x

  19. Tracy says:

    Awesome piece! It makes me want to get on a plane right now.

  20. Lauren says:

    Hehe, thanks Trace. Wish we could all go on a big girly holiday together!

  21. Tanya says:

    This is such a lovely peace of writing :) I spent my first day in London in Putney, all the way back in July 2003. Everyone was wearing pink and I had a picnic with my mom’s friends on the Thames river bank, close to the rowing clubs. First dinner was the best Thai curry I ever had just up the road and t was still light outside after 9PM. Thanks for reminding me about the good ol’ UK. :)

    Good luck!

  22. Lynne Mackey says:

    AWesome story Lauren.

  23. Lauren says:

    Aw, Tanya, thanks so much for those lovely words. Putney is just so lovely, I love it there. Gotta love those Thai curries – they make ’em so good there. Espesh Wagamama’s! x

  24. Dad says:

    Hi La,
    Lovely article and just oozes how much you fellin love with London.

  25. Winfried says:

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