I live in the East End, which is really hard to describe – there’s definitely no suburb in Australia I know of that’s similar.

My flats are here – they’re pretty cute:
Mendip House

This is the sign close up:
Mendip House sign

On my street alone there’s a Tibetan art gallery, Buddhist temple, traditional London Pub (called The Florist), Venician restaurant, Chinese restaurant, Indian Restaurant and a Lunch Bar – all within one block.

I’ve heard more languages spoken in the last three days in my neighbourhood, than I have in my entire life combined. It’s an area of migrants, travellers and clichéd East Enders. I love the East Enders I’ve met so far (when I can understand them – their accent isn’t the easiest to negotiate).

There are street markets on the sidewalk every day selling scarves, fabric, underwear, CDs, flowers, innumerable items… It’s a higgledy piggledy place – I love it.

Plus – my local Off License sells 60p pints of milk, alongside bottles of Bollinger worth more than 100 pounds. I wonder who buys Bollinger at a deli?

The craziest things about my flat are that there’s no shower (only a bath tub – which sounds blissful, but is actually a pain in the arse if you don’t want to take more than 15 minutes getting ready to go out), there’s no laundry – the washing machine sits side by side with the fridge in the kitchen, and there’s plastic over the windows (apparently in winter everyone tapes up their windows tightly with clear plastic to prevent wind getting in through the old window frames).

The first time I went to press my face against the window to see outside, I hadn’t realised the plastic was taped to the outside of the frame, and my forehead literally bounced off it. Very strange.