Today was really our first day to explore. After launching ourselves off with a delicious coffee and an almond croissant from Fork Deli Patisserie, we got out our “to-do” list and got started figuring out our life in London. The high priorities – how to get money, how to spend money and where to hang our hat at the end of the day. So far, everything has gone so easily. I almost don’t want to say that in case I jinx it somehow. The banks didn’t seem to think it would be a problem not having any credit history in England. The same goes for the letting agents – of which there are many.
We decided to walk everywhere today to get a vibe for the different areas in North London. There are so many great neighbourhoods – Angel, Islington, Kings Cross (deemed “up-and-coming”), Bloomsbury, Camden. The list could go on, but after visiting probably 10 letting agents today, we are burned out. We also burned out Phil’s knee, so he was virtually crawling from agency to agency down the main drag in The Angel. We viewed our first flat and ran screaming in horror. That was a slight exaggeration. The flat was the least expensive on our short-list at £295 per week. And yes, you did the math correctly – that is just over $450 Canadian. And yes, that is per week. So a 1 bedroom flat comes in at a minimum of £1278 or just over $2000 Canadian. How about we all agree to just stop converting? That would be fantastic.
image via fluid london
The good news is that so far the cost of things hasn’t driven us to drink. I’ve been quite surprised that the cost of food is somewhat comparable. Although I can see eyes rolling from the other side of the globe, since many of you know my favourite grocery store is Whole Foods (a.k.a. Whole Paycheque), so my cost metre might be off. We discovered that Chipotle spans the globe and is equally delicious in London as it is everywhere else. I was just saying yesterday how upset I was that Vancouver just got a Chipotle location and then we leave. Then I turn the corner in Angel, and there sits a Chipotle.
We also got phone numbers today, so email me for details. Canadians close your eyes now. We are paying £20 a month for both of our phones, which includes unlimited data and voicemail. And this is a pay-as-you-go account, since we have no credit history here.