I am a freelance writer, editor and teacher based in north London.
Published November 11th 2012
What becomes of the broken hearted?
Okay, so they've finally left you. It's happened. The world has opened up and the days of cosy lie-ins and lazy brunches seem to be over. That's the bad news. The truly bad news.
The upside to this situation is there are few better places to nurse a broken heart than London. The city is awash with places to go and exciting new people to meet. The only limitations are the ones you place upon yourself, so chin up. Let's start making you feel better.
1.) The post break up face-stuffing incident.
Few things can fix a broken heart quite like getting your fill of your favourite food. One perfect place is Riley's ice cream shop on Crouch End Broadway (32 The Broadway London N8 9SU).
With a seemingly limitless supply of flavours and varieties, this is the perfect place to get that all important pick me up. You deserve to be indulgent. It's your right as a heartbreak victim.
2.) The post break up, laughed till I peed a little bit incident.
Laughter is the best medicine. It can cure any number of ailments, but is particularly effective when dealing with emotional aches and pains.
The great news is that in London, comedy means so much more than a Michael sodding Macintyre DVD. Every night of the week you can get a seat at the back (there is a time and place for being heckled by a comedian; post-break up is not one of them) and laugh till your ribs have that pleasant stitch feeling.
Two great examples of comedy nights are Jongleurs (various locations- e.g.- 80 Haymarket London SW1Y 4TE) or the 99 Comedy Club (1 Torrens Street, Islington , EC1V 1NQ) although there are so many, it'd take me all day to list them,
3.) The post break up- 'got myself in shape, I'll show them what they're missing', incident.
Indulgence is great. It'll get you through the dark days when things seem particularly gloomy. Eventually, though, you're going to want to handle this like a grown up, rather than a sulking teenager, and that can mean only one thing- getting so in shape that the idiot regrets ever leaving you. It's the only mature response.
You could try a yoga class to de-stress and give yourself that glowy- skinned radiance that makes you look stunning. Or you could try Virgin Active, who have great all inclusive packages that enable you to push, pull, run, swim, steam and sweat for a fixed monthly price.
Virgin Active have great packages for getting in shape.
Oh and between you and me, gyms like this tend to be full of young, toned, gorgeous people who like to look good. Just sayin….
4.) The post break up 'sod it, I'm going to Paris' incident.
What better way of escaping the blues, getting some space, perspective and tacky souvenirs than a trip to Paris. One of the best parts of living in London is the ease with which you can visit other European cities. The Eurostar runs many services a day, each taking less than 2 hours and costing about £120. It's a beautiful thing.
Try a rejuvenating weekend in Paris.
If, however, you've spent all your cash on ice cream, comedy nights and gym membership (and if you have, good for you), there is the much over-looked bus. It takes about 5 hours (or three feel-good films on your laptop) and you can get tickets for about half the cost of the Eurostar. When you consider flying, taking into account travelling to the airport, checking in, the flight and getting from the airport to the city, takes about 4 hours, this seems like a good option. And you can feel good about the teeny tiny carbon footprint of the bus, when compared to the plane.
5.) The post break up 'you know what, I think I'm ready to meet new people', incident.
There's only so long you can wallow in self-pity. You've moved on. You're fitter, stronger and more settled as a human being. You've never been in better shape and your Facebook contains lots of pictures of you surrounded by gorgeous French people, which you secretly hope your ex will see. It's time to love again. Again, London is the greatest wingman.
You could try some of the niche speed dating events that you simply don't get anywhere else. Bit of a science geek? Check out speed dating at the Science Museum. It costs a tenner a pop and you might just find someone to share your love of atoms with. If you are bookish, check out Book Club speed dating (100 Leonard Street, EC2A 4RH) to find your well-read love.
So you've just broken up. I won't lie to you; you're in for a tough few weeks. But luckily, you're in safe hands. London has been helping the broken hearted for a thousand years now. One more won't hurt it.