London In The Sun: Day One and Two…

London in the sun

The past few days have been a blur of activity in the city. I lived in London for almost five years before making the decision to pop home for a few months before heading out on my travels to Australia. I was lucky enough to spend six days last week revisiting some favourite spots, taking in some sights, shows and new experiences as well as seeing some of my favourite people that I haven’t been able to see in way too long!

Bend it like Beckham:

I got to spend Monday night seeing two friends who I went to University with as well as being travel companions on my trip to Uganda. We spent the evening catching up, eating typical English pub grub and going to see Bend It Like Beckham, The Musical at the Pheonix Theatre. Bend it like Beckham was one of the first VIDEO’s I bought for myself out of my saved up pocket money. It made me want to be a footballer for approximately two days until I was reminded just how quickly that football could fly at you! I was keen to see how they would make such a film into an on stage musical and it did not disappoint. An easy going show to watch, BILB’s score and script has hints of ‘Matilda’ meets ‘Billy Elliot’ with a clever fusion of traditional Indian music and original musical numbers. There is also an interesting generation blend shown by the parents and teenagers within the cast during the Bhangra numbers that could get almost anyone laughing and bobbing along. The coming of age struggle, alongside the debate of how to please a traditional family’s views whilst trying to follow your dreams, is shown in a delightful humorous way. And although a bit long, the evening passed quickly and we left the theatre smiling and daydreaming of sparkles and football.

My Village Cafe:

On Tuesday I discovered a cafe that I highly recommend everyone drops into when shopping at Camden. Called ‘My Village Cafe’ and based just past and opposite The Stables side entrance (before you reach Morrisions) this little cafe is a decorative delight. I stepped inside out of the rain for a cup of tea and was immediately made to feel incredibly welcome by the cafe’s hosts. Whilst browsing the fresh food I was handed a sample of a coconut milkshake they had just concocted and I knew I couldn’t have something as simple as an English tea here. Mind you I am fussy when it come’s to my tea, and I don’t like coffee, so a hot chocolate was the only way to go. I ordered and was given another drink sample… this time a chocolate, coffee and ginger blend which was delicious even to a non-coffee drinker like me. I would definitely recommend it to any coffee and hot chocolate lovers visiting. I settled down amongst the rustic furniture, next to the bared brick walls with scattered artifacts, and tucked into my hot chocolate and book whilst the bad weather passed. It was so pleasant I ended up staying for lunch. I wish I discovered this place when I lived in London. It would definitely have been a regular spot of mine.

See their website (under construction) for what it looks like inside. The dim lighting means my photographs do not reflect the place as they should… http://myvillagecafebar.co.uk/virtual-tour-to-my-village.h

Two for Tuesday:

The rest of Tuesday was spent with my housemate and best friend of five years in her new house catching up, watching films and, of course, eating Domino’s!! A perfect couple of days.

xoxo

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Oh So Real…

Oh So Real

I have booked the first place that I am going to stay when I reach Brisbane! Now, when I head off on my own after living in the luxury of a house with my Aunt and Uncle I will be hitting all manners of hostels and unusual accommodation. Of that I am certain. However for my first couple of nights I figured i’m going to be a tad (a lot) jet-lagged! So I would like a good bed for a good sleep so I can make the most of seeing my friend Elise and exploring Brisbane in all its glory!

Where to look for a more persAirBnBonal stay in Brisbane that isn’t a hostel… AirBnB of course! My first ever request has just been accepted and I am so excited to be staying with Clare and her family, in what looks like an absolutely gorgeous place!

Photo’s and tales of my first AirBnB experience will be heading your way from the 31st of July!! Suddenly it feels Oh So REAL!!

I made my own AirBnB logo for my profile, I thought it was quite fitting don’t you agree?

xoxo

Bank Holiday and Blue Skies: Bury St Edmunds…

BURY ST

How was everybody’s bank holiday weekend? How wonderful was it that our Bank Holiday Monday, which are renowned for being wet, was instead replaced with beautiful blue skies! It was glorious!

I spent a lovely day wandering the city of Bury St Edmund’s; exploring the ruins of the Abbey and pottering around the shops in the town centre.

Bury St Edmunds is about an hour and a quarter away from where I live… close enough to pop to for the day but far enough away for those unfortunate motion sickness sufferers (like myself!) to arrive feeling a bit queasy!… So the lovely weather was welcomed as soon as I stepped outside of the car. The morning was spent exploring the park that holds Benedictine Abbey’s ruins. To enter you walk through the Great Gate, which while originally this would have lead to the Great Court and Abbey’s Palace, it now leads into the Abbeys Gardens. And what a beautiful sight they are! Laid out in a Victorian bedding style, the garden was full of unexpected colour. Deep oranges, reds and yellows burst out of the greenery. Well I couldn’t help but stop and take several photos to share with you!IMG_9952

Due to the sun shining and it being bank holiday the park that followed on from the gardens was full of families playing games, walking and eating picnics. Children and parents ran through, around and over the ruins, chasing each other or their dogs and having just a wonderful time. It was so nice watching everyone enjoying themselves, smiling to each other and strangers passing. I think that is part of the beauty of Bury St Edmunds. The history is right there on everyone’s doorstep… or back garden as such. It’s not fenced off with a ‘do not touch’ sign. You can get right in there. Walk the paths of the Benedictine Monks, and the Royals who visited. The children can reenact the history that is in the stone they climb over whilst the adults can daydream about what once was and what is now left behind.

As we stepped out of the park and gardens we came across some houses that were built into the stone wall. They were really quite incredible. We only stopped in the cathedral for a few moments as we had a reservation for lunch, but I think it’s honestly the first cathedral that didn’t make me feel like i’m intruding. Does anyone else ever feel this way? The glass windows were gorgeous, and I think the walls being white rather than a dark brick accentuated them, overall making the place so welcoming.

Whilst we normally like to try a local place rather than a chain restaurant for lunch, we had some vouchers for Pizza Express.. and who can turn down a chance to try somewhere for free?! … Whilst not the best Italian restaurant, it was still lovely. The restaurant itself was decorated wonderfully with local art canvas’ which had designs of post signs pointing to nearby towns on them. It had a light and airy feel to the place which was surprising as from the outside it looked small and cramped. Foodwise: I would highly recommend the Romana Pollo ad Astra Pizza.. although if you like a bit of spice like me, maybe ask for a extra topping of your favourite chilli to give it a bit of a kick… anyone else find that chilli oil never really does much?IMG_9991

After lunch we spent the afternoon wandering around the shops. I love trinket shops with little treasures for your home. It was a true test not to spend any money in them whilst i’m trying to save for Australia! … I did buy a cute tin box with an arty picture of a cat on the lid for my grandma’s birthday which is next month. I’m going to fill it with random notecards as she loves writing letters. A couple of larger shops did catch me out, but in my defense, I did have a H&M voucher from my birthday, so I was allowed to buy the scarf, matching phone case and sunglasses. They will obviously be used on my travels! Oh and that bag from Accessorize had £15 off, so it was just as cheap as if I bought one from Primark. I mean Mum and I really can’t continue to walk around with our matching rucksacks for much longer ;D

We rounded off the day watching The Avengers at the cinema. I love the current Marvel collection and can’t wait for the next installment!

And that sums up a lovely Bank Holiday. ….Unfortunately i’ve been rather ill ever since, so daydreaming about Monday and the other places I’d like to visit before I leave England is the only thing keeping me sane. That and finally being able to sleep again!

xoxo