In 1989 I returned from a quarter abroad to London. My purpose was to take two weeks to find a job that would span until my thesis year began at Auburn. Not just any job, but an interesting job. I came back heady from all the art and architecture I had observed, experienced, and absorbed. I had a hit list of three key architecture firms I wanted to work for...and I aimed a little high. The people I wanted to work for had designed things you would see in the highest of architectural journals -- stores in the best areas of London (I'm not talking Walmart here.), hailed innovators, hot names in the 80's. We had visited all these places and met many of these architects on our student tours.
One of the names I started with was Eva Jiricna. She was so kind. She met with me on an interview and took the time to make a list of possible contacts. She even made some special phone calls for me. I was amazed that someone so cutting edge and so famous worked out of a small loft with only two other people. (Now a huge group.) Anyway, I kept following up on those contacts until I had a job in a Covent Garden firm. It took less than a week. Pretty good since all I had was my sketchbook, my alien work permit, and some dogged determination. It was a wonderful few months. I was there in large part due to my parents, but just to know that I could go to a foreign country and make a home meant everything to who I have become today. It's hard to believe that was 16 years ago.
I googled my old firm the other day - Limbrick Limited: Architecture + Design. Low and behold they have grown astronomically. I mean REALLY grown. Wow. And in the history of the firm they talk about those early days in Covent Garden as Stephen Limbrick and Associates. Please remind me that I was somewhere special professionally...especially on the days when I've barely survived family fun. London as a 22 year old is not mundane. ;-)