Sunday, 29 November 2009

Sunday grub.

Today, Hubbie and Traveller were introduced to a new gastro-pub in Notting Hill:
The Prince Bonaparte.

We caught up with our old flatmates...
{T would have taken pictures, but
the camera has officially been lost forever}

... and ate a delicious Sunday roast!
{Beef, yorkshire pudding, cheesy cauliflower,
potatoes, parsnip, carrots and kale}

A Sunday roast is a long-running tradition in Britain, and
T is always happy to participate.

The best part - dessert!
Hubbie had a delicious creme brulee and T had brownies with toffee ice-cream.

The pub is beautiful inside, has a warm, lovely atmosphere and we had a great afternoon catching up with old friends.
{well, as old as we've been in London anyway}

photo via flickr

Thursday, 26 November 2009

Mexican makes me happy.

Recently, Traveller visited the very first Mexican Cantina to open in London (1982) and boy, did it live up to its reputation.

Cafe Pacifico doesn't take reservations over the weekend, so you just turn up hoping for the best. We were told we would have a two hour wait. With no hope of reaching the bar through the heaving crowd, we popped next door to The Langley for happy hour and a chat.

Two hours later, tasty margaritas in hand, we were served the best Mexican food Traveller has tasted since she was in the North West of America.

delicious delicious fajitas.

Saturday, 21 November 2009

Weighing in.

Having seen 'New Moon' last night, Traveller feels the need to voice her opinion.

{unlike most readers,
T actually did enjoy 'New Moon' the novel}

you are cute. But, you really need to stop making
that torturous look of 'I love you, but I'm in pain'.
It's becoming a little intolerable {and giggle inducing}.

Where did you come from?
Even in CGI you are more believable than Edward.
{You didn't induce too many giggles}

Make the right choice.
He doesn't suck blood, or have chest hair.
{You only induced giggles
when you ran through the forest
as a vampire - what was that scene???}

So there it is.
Traveller has to admit she was excited about seeing the film,
even after the first 'Twilight' made her cringe with disappointment.

In her opinion, New Moon was an improvement -
especially in terms of special effects and some of the acting.

There still was, however, a lot of cheese.

Tuesday, 17 November 2009

the really really great garage sale.

This weekend Traveller and running friend went to the really really great garage sale at Selfridges.

The garage sale was in aid of charity 'mothers4children' and you were able to buy donated goods from celebrities like Natalie Imbruglia, Gwyneth Paltrow, Lily Allen and Liz Hurley. There were also many celebrities on hand to sell the items in the store's carpark.

Now, T and running friend skipped the crowds and went later in the afternoon, but we still managed to see our fill of B grade British celebrities {remember the bands 'All Saints' and 'Atomic Kitten'?} and 'running friend' even managed to find two lovely dresses.

T has to say that the donated clothes were in super-good-nick. And this means that when Gwyneth Paltrow's Balenciaga boots are up for a thrifty sale (£70!), it really is a case of 'one's trash is another's treasure'.

photo via flickr

Friday, 13 November 2009

The sweet smell of success.

This week Traveller and some friends went to their first Pub Quiz!

'Running friend' has an actor friend that hosts the quizzes all over London (it's big business) and this week, it just happened to be quite near us, at Primrose Hill.

It was held at Queen's Pub, which is lovely, and quite famous for, er, famous people drinking and eating there.

The quiz really brought out the teacher in Traveller - we had to write down our answers to questions like: 'What is the slowest moving mammal in the world?' and we had to mark another team's answers at half'-time and at the end! Traveller almost wished she brought her red pen and 'Well Done' stickers.

The best news is - with a little help from a chap waiting for his wife - we won!

The prize was a £30 voucher for the pub - which Traveller is pretty sure will be spent next week, when we go to quiz night again!

Wednesday, 11 November 2009

The Bulge.

Traveller recently had a very truthful conversation (via skype) with her father.

It went something like this:

Dad: What is that your eating? Cereal?
Traveller: No, icecream. It's 10pm.
Dad: (pause) Oh, it's winter over there isn't it?
Traveller: Yes.
Dad: Mmm. You're looking a little fuller in the face.
Traveller: (gasp!)

As cruel as that may have seemed at the time, it's perfectly correct that 'the truth hurts'. Traveller simply can not help herself at this time of the year. And hey, a trip to France with bottomless wine, cheese and bread didn't really help!

The worst (or best) part is that school really pulls out all the stops this time of year. Most of you know that T eats a free lunch at school, and at this time of year, the options to increase your calorie intake are substantial!

Let's look at today's lunch for example:
Roast chicken with all the trimmings (and gravy! oooh gravy!), followed by a delectable apple crumble with warm custard. Let's face it - nothing warms you up like hot custard!

Oh dear.

T really needs to face the cold, hard truth.

Nothing warms you up like a muffin-top, saddle-bags and bat-wing arms - but that doesn't mean it's appealing.

It's time to say, 'No!' to all {upbeat euphemism for 'some'} things fatty!

Now, just before the afore-mentioned lock-down on fatty food kicks in, T would like to introduce you to the Churro.

A churro is a Spanish donut, usually served with hot chocolate sauce.

If you have never had the distinct pleasure of eating one of these scrumptious little morsels - get thee to a supermarket!

One of T's favourite food blogs, cannelle et vanille, just posted a delicious recipe for cooking the little darlings and T suggests you get cooking!

Traveller and 'best gal' at the Portobello Road Markets, indulging in Churros.

The churros on Cannelle et Vanille

photo courtesy and copyright of Aran Goyoaga

Monday, 9 November 2009

So long, Camera.

Traveller is sorry.

She didn't mean to leave you, dear camera, on that bus seat.

Who knows what happened to you?

She was excited about seeing Phantom and jumped off the bus in delight.

Not so delighted when she came to take a photo in the theatre, and you weren't there.

Now, Traveller knows she wasn't always very kind to you...
especially when your memory started to loosen.

She'd take it all back, just for one more photo.
{and the pile of unsaved images}

You have 21 days to resurface camera, before T must accept that you are gone forever.


The show, by the way, was stunning.

Saturday, 7 November 2009

Should I stay or should I go now?

The famous song by 'The Clash' is swimming around Traveller's head.

T and husband will soon have to decide whether they want to leave Londontown in July 2010, or whether they want to stay another year.

Traveller would like to give two term's notice to her school, but she and hubbie are really having trouble deciding.

There are so many reasons to stay.

There are places left to see, things left to accomplish and more fun to be had...

but something is really pulling T back to OZ.

{not just the gorgeous sunny weather..
although that definitely beckons!}

Should she stay or should she go now?

Thursday, 5 November 2009

Take a punt.

Traveller had the privilege of going to Cambridge last week with 'best gal', her husband and flattie.

{Hubbie was working.}

Cambridge is a town which hosts one of Britain's finest universities.

It was the most perfect fall day and, because it's a fun tradition, we went punting.

Punting happens in a flat-bottomed boat, and you move by propelling yourself with a long pole.

Traveller had been punting before with family in Oxford, but that was a much more scary experience! T's brother pushed them from river bank to river bank and they almost capsized!

'Best gal's' husband was a much more proficient punter and had us gliding smoothly along the River Cam. We were so smooth in fact, that T was convinced that it must have been really easy.

So she volunteered her services.

Let's just say, as soon as T got some speed up, her knees would start wobbling and the words 'Man Overboard!' began echoing in her mind.

T quickly passed the pole on.

Cambridge is beautiful, though.

Sunday, 1 November 2009


Traveller has had many exciting and fun adventures over her half-term break. Catching up with 'best gal' was superb and much-needed. One of the most memorable things they did {along with both husbands and another couple} was satiate T's need for travel. We went on a group road trip to Normandy, France and it was fantastic!

We all managed to squeeze into a Volkswagon 'Touran' - a 7 seater car - and yes, T, being the shortest, was in the back seat most of the time! We drove to Normandy via Dover where we caught the ferry to Callais and then drove on to Bayeux. Traveller is a big fan of road-trips. The singing. The emergency bathroom pit-stops. The guilty McDonald's meals. The endless supply of chocolate. The inane car games that just keep going and going. Nothing beats a group road-trip!

Bayeux is a gorgeous little town in Normandy, which is not only beautiful but a great jumping off point for most tourist tick-the-box-hot-spots. We spent one day visiting the D-Day beaches and memorials which were quite sombering and brought World War II to life. The next day we spent visiting the Mt. St. Michel which was quite breath-taking from a distance, but a little bit of a tourist-trap once there. T felt disappointed, although, husband managed to withstand a tremendous queue for the Abbey and he said that this was quite spectacular.

The rest of our time was spent visiting markets, eating French food and drinking French wine. It was a memorable trip, made even more momentous by the company of friends and the consumption of extraordinary French food.

The climb into the back seat

The incredibly large bathroom at the Hotel de Saint Croix


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