Growing up in a London suburb was a bit frustrating. We didn't live near enough to the city centre to be
 able to make a quick trip there. It took about an hour by tube. Nor were we out in the 'green belt'
 countryside around London, so the only connection we had with nature were a few trees in our street and
 the local park.

Travelling into London to shop on Oxford Street or hit a West End pub or club was a rare occurrence. I
 remember one Saturday night, with nothing much to do, my best mate Graham and I decided to drive
 into London in his car. We had enough money for petrol, but we couldn't afford the high prices of inner-city
 bars, so we spent the night cruising around the West-end in Grahams Ford Escort.

Christmas was the exception. Presents had to be bought, so a yearly trip to the West End of London was
 practically obligatory. We always went in by tube and had lunch in one of the big department stores like
 Selfridges or John Lewis. Never Harrods; That was too expensive! I remember the crowds of shoppers in
 the streets, the noise of the traffic, the cold December wind and my aching feet at the end of a long day
 walking around the shops.

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