I ask myself this question every time I go there. What's so special about London? Why am I drawn to it like no other city? There are plenty of cities which are more beautiful, elegant, exciting even. London is not chic like Paris, vibrant like New York or friendly like Amsterdam. It can be a dirty, noisy, lonely, dreary, dangerous place. Yet as my car heads along the Westway with the city spread out before me or my train slowly pulls into Marylebone station, my heart gives a leap of excitement. It is as though the whole city is waiting for me to explore it, plunge into its unknown byways, discover its hidden secrets. It is then that I understand Samuel Johnson's well-known quotation - to paraphrase "when you are tired of London, it is time to retire to the countryside with your pipe and slippers!"