What London Means To Me - By Skandar Keynes (The Citizen)

What London Means to Me
by Skandar Keynes – 4S

As I sit on the number four bus to and from school, I can see what London Means to me. On the way into school in the early hours of the morning, I see the sun gently rising in the east as it illuminates our wonderfully multicultural city. I pass through a variety of areas, from housing estates to mansions and luxury apartments. I see all different people from every walk of life. At Highbury & Islington station, I see the jolly European builders (with paint-splattered overalls and all with their heads bowed due to obvious height constraints) sit down alongside the bankers (with their highly maintained suits). At the Angel, I see other school children from every school intermingling amongst each other, united by the common enemy of school.

I pass through roaring high streets, where you would be hard stretched to find ten quiet metres, and then into back alleys that are riddled with opinionated graffiti. As my bus progresses through the City, you can see nearly every type of sight there is to see about London.

On the way home, I see almost the same sight but the main difference is that now people, winding down, are preparing for another day. With a setting sun on their backs, the diverse people of London, tired from a hard day’s work, get back on my bus and head home.

What London means to me is a bus route, that takes me to and from school, and takes so many others along with their life. It shows London for what it truly is, a combination of people from so many different origins. London to me is a weekday morning on the bus, with people sitting side by side. A group of people that as little as fifty years ago, would never be sitting together, that would be scattered around the world. This to me is an achievement, that has been made by our modern city, that so many other cities should also encourage. This is what London is to me, an achievement.

This great article was publised in ''The Citizen'' (CLS weekly newsletter) for the 10th issue of the 2006 Autumn Term. Skandar Keynes was awarded commendation (and cheque to match) at the London Metropolitan Archives Award Ceremony for this article. It was selected as one of the best articles of the ''What London Means to Me'' competition. You can see a caption of the original article here.

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