Heading to London airports is miserable in the winter with foggy roads, train strikes and endless queuing. Here are ten more reasons why escaping to exotic destinations is a bad idea and why we totally recommend staying in London:
1. The food is way better in London than anywhere else in the world. Think about the magnificent range of choice, not a beer and packet of Frazzles. We can eat Italian for lunch and Thai food for supper. Or sushi. Or Ethiopian. Or perhaps a Venezuelan-Mauritius-Lithuanian mashup at a pop-up/boutique/streetfood extravaganza.
2. We mix with people from every part of the world here. Most days it's easy to brush up against people from about 30 different countries. London is the undisputed capital of diversity. Over 300 languages are officially spoken and that's without even thinking about the different dialects of English on the streets.
3. Have you seen the Neasden Temple or the golden domed Mosque at Regents Park? Who needs to visit the Blue Mosque or the Taj Mahal? Not us. We can drop into world class mosques, churches and temples if we need a spiritual uplift.
4. With the exception of the boys loos at my kids school, London toilets are mostly top notch. With toilet paper and everything. We all appreciate these comforts once we've been to certain far flung places.
5. Leaving London for hotter places involves air travel. Air travel has come a long way since it was considered glamorous, especially travelling via London's airports. These days it's all about guilt, burning carbon, queuing and, on arrival, feeling confused about which time to eat breakfast.
6. We have way less likelihood of contracting nasty illnesses if we stay in London. We have no poisonous creatures lurking in our gardens and parks, and little chance of catching anything worse than a cold in the winter. And if you do manage to get ill with a mysterious bug, we have the magnificent School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine in Kings Cross to rescue us.
7. Our local corner shop even has bread from around the world: from fresh French style croissants to Middle Eastern flat bread to sliced Polish rye. It's a happy sight for tired Sunday mornings. Tacos? Pasta? Hot Chillies? Medjool Dates? No problem. We are definitely fans of shopping locally if it means saying goodbye to boring supermarkets and sliced white loaves.
8. Taking a trip to hotter countries means breaking into a sweat from doing nothing at all. With our 'wonderful' cooler climate we Londoners rarely have to worry about sweat, air conditioning or mosquitos. It's no problem to walk about in the midday sun - as it's normally not there.
9. Planes may technically go faster but the Jubilee Line is can whizz us from Wembley to the Southbank in the blink of an eye. If you blink you eye for about half an hour.
10. Who needs a beach when we've got the ponds on Hampstead Heath or the lido at London Fields? What? They are chilly in January? Don't be a wimp and jump in.