A Stroll Through My London


London, the call of the old in so many ways, including my old life. As I walked through Leicester Square, which I have done numerous times since I went to university there, new memories and images emerged. So little changed and yet, so much.

The pizza stand on the corner as you veer to the right heading towards Covent Garden remains unchanged as does the Cork & Bottle next door, now adjacent to a half-priced theatre stand. Blood Brothers is still playing in the West End, now in its 20th year. For old times sake, I saw it again, for the 9th time. As good as it ever was, the English dry wit and extraordinary drama are there to remind you that its not an American play with a perfect fairy-tail ending (both main characters die in the end).

One of the two colleges I attended has now been turned into Capital Radio and the Kensington campus of Richmond University seemed smaller somehow (isn’t it supposed to be the other way around?) Two blocks from the main campus, a new bakery solely focused on cupcakes just opened. Then I proceeded to get lost in a park I knew cold.


I only had time to visit one of the numerous places I lived over the years, a small basement garden flat near Earls Court. Again, it seemed smaller and the outside plants needed work.


One of the coffee bistros where I worked had barely changed — the new manager informed me that the same family who owned it twenty years ago is still involved. He served me the best cappuccino I’ve had in London on the house and nearly enticed me to help out for a few days.

As for the countless pubs where I served pint after pint, the central-London locales were close to untouched with the exception of an added TV screen or video game machine, both glaring oddities in a British institution.

High Street Kensington and Kings Road felt cheaper or perhaps my standards are now higher. Barkers recently closed down and while Harrods has as much grandeur as ever, the food hall, while enticing on multiple levels, did not measure up to Paris’ Galeries Lafayette.

The chocolates were decadent and rich however and I found myself buying a few from each counter, always amazed at the beautiful choice of packaging, almost worth the price of the item alone. As I relished in one great design after another, I was reminded that soon, I’d be introduced to much more in Italy, my next stop.

Renee Blodgett
Renee Blodgett is the founder of We Blog the World. The site combines the magic of an online culture and travel magazine with a global blog network and has contributors from every continent in the world. Having lived in 10 countries and explored nearly 80, she is an avid traveler, and a lover, observer and participant in cultural diversity.

She is also the CEO and founder of Magic Sauce Media, a new media services consultancy focused on viral marketing, social media, branding, events and PR. For over 20 years, she has helped companies from 12 countries get traction in the market. Known for her global and organic approach to product and corporate launches, Renee practices what she pitches and as an active user of social media, she helps clients navigate digital waters from around the world. Renee has been blogging for over 16 years and regularly writes on her personal blog Down the Avenue, Huffington Post, BlogHer, We Blog the World and other sites. She was ranked #12 Social Media Influencer by Forbes Magazine and is listed as a new media influencer and game changer on various sites and books on the new media revolution. In 2013, she was listed as the 6th most influential woman in social media by Forbes Magazine on a Top 20 List.

Her passion for art, storytelling and photography led to the launch of Magic Sauce Photography, which is a visual extension of her writing, the result of which has led to producing six photo books: Galapagos Islands, London, South Africa, Rome, Urbanization and Ecuador.

Renee is also the co-founder of Traveling Geeks, an initiative that brings entrepreneurs, thought leaders, bloggers, creators, curators and influencers to other countries to share and learn from peers, governments, corporations, and the general public in order to educate, share, evaluate, and promote innovative technologies.
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