Guess what????? I'm coming home!!!! My time here in the UK is almost over. In fact I head back to the USA TOMORROW!!!!! Yessssss!!!! Can you tell I'm super excited?!?!?! I haven't been home since I came over in August 2015. I've had amazing opportunities to learn how to be a doctor, how to better navigate different cultures & countries, learned to accept that everything won't always be what you expect but pleasant surprises often crop up, had a chance to see more of the world, made some lifelong friends, lived with a diverse group of people, and overall had a great experience. If knowing everything I know now, given the chance to do it all over again I would without any hesitation!!! Embracing other people and places allows one to grow more as a person as long as you're open to the differences.
I've made some great memories in London that will last a lifetime! As I sit in the airport in Barcelona heading back to London one last time, after a super fun trip with my girls (more about that later), I'm reminded of some things I'll miss...and others I'm happy to leave behind.
-Great public transport system: London is very well connected and it's nice not feeling like you NEED a car to get anywhere.
-Central gateway to many other countries: This was one of the best parts of being in London. There are multiple airports around the area allowing you to get to a great number of places fairly quickly and pretty in expensively. My flight to Rome last week was £23...That's the equivalent of roughly $30!! I've visited Scotland, Iceland, Venice, Zurich, Paris❤️, Toulouse; Marrakech, Casablanca, Chefchouen-all in Morocco; Amsterdam, Rome & Barcelona via reasonably priced flights. Man I'm gonna miss the travel!!!
-Walkability: I walked to & from the hospital every day. The city is also easy to navigate on foot if you don't want to ride the Tube just a few stops.
-My Patients & Mentors: The patients have been so willing to help train this upcoming Doctor. I can't thank them enough for allowing me to ask tons of questions, practice examination skills & procedures on them without hesitation. The Doctors I worked with, from the Juniors to those with 30+ years on the job, were great teachers and willingly took time to help me be a better future Doc.
-Fashion Sense: The people in London look good. Their clothes, hair, shoes...always on point. And both the men & women make an effort to look good regularly!
-TEA TIME!! I think I've had a cup of tea every day I've been in London and I love it. Traditional Afternoon Tea with scones, sandwiches & desserts is even better!
-Weather: For the most part it sucks, but you get used to the grey skies really quickly. But when there's a good day or weekend it helps make up for all the cold rains and bitter winds of the past.
-Smokers!: So many people smoke! It's always in your face. Definitely won't miss the pervasive cigarettes.
-Exchange rate: The dollar to pound conversion was pretty dismal when I first got here. It's gotten ever so slightly better but not by much. Everything costs about 50% more when converting US Dollars-->Pounds Sterling (£).
I'm most looking forward to going home to see my family & friends. It's been too long!
Gotta run...Thanks for keeping up with my crazy adventure!
Until next time....