Wednesday, May 18, 2005


London is a wonderful city. Yes the cost of living is expensive but nothing beats London's cosmopolitan residents. Londoners are tolerant, polite and happy (for most of the time).

London as a political, financial and entertainment city of Britain obviously attracts more tourists that other cities even when compared to some in Europe. And if there is one thing I dislike about
some of them (tourist, not the city) is that they are terribly ignorant.

Yesterday I had to run a couple of errands around the city and was hiphopping through London's extensive network of buses and tube stations. So I had more than my usual brush with London's tourist population. So I am going to complain a little bit today.

Grumble begins.

To the many many groups traveling together. There are places where you all can chat and that is not on the sidewalk. And please please stand on the right side of the escalator. You can read right? It isn't even an etiquette, it is a rule. And not only in London, but also in your own country. Some people need to rush down in a hurry. This is London for gods sake. A couple of seconds will make a difference to our life you know. Just watch Sliding Doors. And let us off first! It is irritating.

To the American tourist (age 30-40, badly dressed, Green Park, 1pm) carrying that obviously fake Gucci of yours, please confine your bodily parts to yourself. Do not dangle your handbag on the center arm with your upper hand stretched outwards. The subterranean passage of Green Park station isn't that wide and you were obviously in lost. So please bring a map with you the next time or ask one of the many underground staffs present. I would have helped but Londoners don't talk to strangers. I know Green Park is confusing with three lines and broken lifts, but I still managed well when I was here as a tourist in 1996!

To that hottie oriental (China?) tourist with the silver Canon Ixus 40 on the number 14 to Tottenham Court Road with a group of six friends. There is no sun love. It was even pissing rain. So why the bloody shades? And you should have gone to
Specsavers. You too.

And finally to all the new mothers. I know you are excited but come on, if your child is four years old and can run that means you don't need a buggy anymore! It is not easy trying to navigate through the
empty buggies usually filled with a fake baby while your 'toddler' runs around.

Grumble ends.

To future tourists of London, please read The Mole's excellent Underground Etiquette guide. Enjoy your trip and try not to piss off the locals. Better still try to act like one.


Anisah said...

Hi Jon,
Enjoyed reading your grumbles, and could totally connect with them. I avoid all your protagonists by cycling everywhere within 6 miles radius of the City. Cycling brings out other nerve-racking characters.

Jon Choo said...

Cheers. I used to cycle around till my bicycle got stolen, now I just walk or take the bus and tube occasionally. If I start early I can cover a couple of miles in an hour.