Introduce yourself :)
I'm Caity - a 23 year old American who fell in love with London after a study abroad semester, and did everything in her power to get back. I am now living here full-time where I am getting a Master's Degree, and working my ways to stick around long term.
I'm also blogging over at Where The Heart Is! You can find me there writing about life in London, along with a few other interests of mine - mainly theatre, travel, and The Beatles!
You are currently in grad school in the UK so you can get a job in London when you graduate. What are you doing to make sure this happens?
Before I made the decision to go to move to London for grad school, I spent the month of October 2013 in the city after spending the prior Summer in contact with as many different companies as I could, setting up interviews. I had a few scheduled for my trip, and went with the intentions, confidence, and a lot of hope that I'd leave with a lead to some type of offer that would give me a working visa. When things fell through, I felt a bit defeated - but that's when grad school came up. By doing this degree, I've got more of a business foundation to support my career experience, as well as the year to connect and network with as many companies I can. I am involved in a Mentor Programme at my University where I will be advised by someone who is currently in the UK business world, and working part time for a company that does have visa sponsorships. I've tried to grab all the angles and set myself up for success no matter what comes my way - and while I've still got over a year here as a student, I feel pretty good about where the future will lead!
In your travels, what would you say has left the biggest impression on you?
Most definitely, the lasting impression is the connections I've been able to make with people so different from myself. I love traveling, seeing the amazing settings and scenes, but being able to immerse yourself in another life apart from your own is an incredible experience!
You're a huge Beatles fan. When did that become a part of your life?
Ah, this question! While I wish I could say I grew up on The Beatles records and fell in love with them in the womb, it was far from this. I always knew of The Beatles and liked the 5 songs I really knew, but I had my first real experience with them in January 2012, when I studied abroad. My old London roommate, who's still my London roommate to this day, Heather, is the one who grew up around The Beatles from her Mom's crazy (and AMAZING) obsession. She was dying to go to Liverpool once we got to London, and I was absolutely for this trip - I wanted to experience everything I could, so even though I didn't know much about the place I was ready to visit. In those three days we spent in Liverpool, my life absolutely changed. I fell so hard in love with Liverpool, the people I met, and the crazy fun that I had - the music was the soundtrack to our weekend, and once we got back into London, I was hooked. From then on, it's really been 'all Beatles, all the time,' and I wouldn't have it any other way!
Where do you see yourself (and your blog) in 10 years?
Wow - 10 years! For myself personally, that is probably an impossible question. If you asked me in 2011 where I saw myself in 3 years, I would not have had the slightest thought at it being where I am today - NOT AT ALL! I couldn't have anticipated all of the twists and turns life has taken me since I first came to London, but it has been the greatest adventure I could have asked for. So, in 10 years all I can say is that I hope I haven't let up on this crazy, amazing, and unpredictable life, and that most of all, I am happy.
As far as my blog goes, I hope this thing can stay alive for a while longer! It's presented me with so many opportunities that I would have never imagined, and allowed me to connect(and even meet!) with people from all over the world, so even if it doesn't last for 10 years, it's not going anywhere anytime soon!
What are your favorite travel or writing resources?
Okay - I'm absolutely crazy when it comes to research on these things!
For travel, Hostelz.com is always my go-to - I swear by this site. They have just about every hostel there is possible on that site, filled with information, maps, reviews, etc. I literally use it every time I book a trip.
For flights, I always feel like eDreams gives the best deals, but I frequent through StudentUniverse, SkyScanner, EasyJet and Kayak. I know I know, that's a lot - but flights cost a lot too! You've got to have an army of sites behind you if you want to make sure you're getting the best possible deal!
For Living in London, I always use TimeOut for events that are going on - they are the best resource for just about everything.
For the West End in London, I always use TheatreMonkey. Ticket deals, seat plans, reviews of every section of the theatre, day ticket information - literally everything an unknowing tourist could ask for in this case.
When it comes to writing/blogging resources, I am not sure if I have favorites. What I normally do is search for what I need on Pinterest - they have tons of blog posts about topic ideas, writing styles, link ups, advertising, and all the advice you will need! I personally love this blogging board.