30 September 2010

Stitching day with Jenny

Today was our first stitching day. Both mum and I were fairly sure we wouldn't be able to sew for a whole day, but Jenny, our most excellent tutor, made it easy. I usually only cross stitch and was determined to try something new. I picked one on the needle work kits which had all sorts of stitches, most of which I still don't know the names of. I was really amazed how much I achieved in the day and how quickly the time few. My kit makes a little vista with three castle towers, some bushes, water, a hill and the sun. I got the hill and all three castle towers sew up. Now the question will be what to do at the next stitching day, as I am keen to keeping going on this kit, but there might be some thing else new and exciting I might need to try.

After sewing all day mum and I headed off with four other ladies on the tour into Hook, the nearest town, to find a pub for dinner. I mean posh is all very we and good, but it gets to be a bit much after a while. I had a small dinner, with much cider.

29 September 2010

Tilney Hall Dinner

Well dinner was defiantly a pretty shoe occasion. We even had palette cleansers, which more than one person in our group were thinking were fairly poxey entres. I ate far too much, but it was all very nice, all three courses.

Hampton Court Palace

Today, after not one but TWO fire alarms (one at 11:30pm which woke us both up with a terrible fright and one at 8:00am ish just as we were about to go down to breakfast) we headed off to Hampton Court Palace.
This is a place of vareying history from King Henry VIII through to present. We spent the whole day there and it was great not to have to rush so much. Some of the rooms were really amazing. The newer rooms (from William III time) were really disturbingly austintachious.
There where heaps of school kids and we got to meet King Henry VIII, who was wondering around all day, as it was his wedding day. A bit sad I know, but he did look very impressive, as did all the other costumed folk.
We also had a tour of the Royal School of Needlework. Some of the things on display were very interesting and it is odd to hear that people can make a career in embroidery in the UK, which you never could at home.
Right now we are back on the bus heading to Tilney Hall (which is near Hook), where we will stay for the next two nights. We also have a 'flash' dinner tonight which will be interesting. I think I will be able to wear my pretty shoes, as I won't have to go outside.

28 September 2010

London attractions

So I said bye bye to Neil this morning. I am completely positive he won't be posting to the blog of his adventures, so I don't know how any of us will find out what he will be upto for the next nearly 2 weeks.
Our first stop was a bus trip to the V&A. This would have been easier to walk to, but moving on. Our tour lady was very nice and she took us to look at things I would normally not looked twice at, so it was very informative. We realty didnt have enoght time there, but I get the feeling you could spend two weeks in there and still feel like you didn't have enough time there.
Next stop was Liberty of London. Very nice and everything but really it is just a shop! I got myself a tiny present and something for fiona. Then mum and I went to look in some nearby stores. I also took this opertunity to sort the phone debarkle. I now have a proper UK number. Now all I need is some wifi to email it to people.
Last stop for the day was afternoon tea at the Ritz. This is not something I would have ever done myself, but it was nice and the building was very beautiful. I ate too many cakes.

27 September 2010

To Greenwich and beyond

In theory today was the first day of the tour. In reality the only thing on today was a dinner so Mum, Neil and I went to Greenwich. We travelled by tube and DLR and walked the last bit. Half the stuff we went to see was being used as a film set for the Pirates of the Caribbean 4 film which was partly interesting in its self but also a bit of a bum. It was a steep climb up to the main observatory but it was worth it. There were heaps of cool telescopes and other interesting instrumentation to look at but most importantly there was the east west meridian line to stand on and have my photo taken on :)
Also there is a virtual cache about the area, which I hopefully can log fairly soon.
Mum and I left Neil there and headed towards Oxford St to a cloths store we found out about. Mum got a nice top and I got some jeans and a pretty scarf. By this stage peak hour was starting and it was time to head home. Mum and I were due to have a flash dinner as the first night of our Stitches and Stately Homes tour. The service was average, but the food was quite good, man were we ready for bed by the end of it!

26 September 2010


Today was a day of meetings. First step was for me to make my way to ??? Area where I was to meet Clare. Unfortunately the tube was having some work done on it so I had to make my way there by bus. I was fairly early so I decided to walk to Albert Hall first, this is where the 'Proms' are preformed every year. I'll be truthful now, most of my reason for going was that there was a cache there. I had it in the bag fairly quickly. I also looked at the Albert Memorial, which is huge. I can only say that Victoria must have been impossibly grieved when her husband died.

Next I took the bus to ??? This turned out to be way closer than I thought. There also happened to be some close caches ;) one was even big enough for me to put one of my geo coins into! While caching I eventually heard from Clare who had decided we should meet else where, which was mile away for me, especially give the broken tube in the area. So I decided to finish finding the cache I was looking for at the time THEN head for the bus stop (which happened to have another cache nearby) so that made 4 caches.

Eventually I made it to Waterloo and found Clare. We had a very pleasant lunch and a good chat. It was great to catch up with her. Then we headed our separate way.

Neil and I were to meet at Mansion House station and try and find the Pearly Kings and Queens parade. We were both quite late and it was very cold and quite rainy. In the end I think we were too late and we couldn't find anything. Oh well.
After all this stuffing around, Neil and I were both stuffed, so we went back to the hotel to find mum. That accomplished we went out to the nice, if slightly more expensive, organic restaurant we had seen earlier (one time when we were lost) It was really delicious. We all ate to much but it was great food.

25 September 2010

Museum x2

So, the plan was to briefly drop into the Natural History Museum and Science Museum. After getting slightly geographically embarrassed on the way there, we made it. Neither of them was open yet!! and the cues! I'm not sure if it's school holidays or not but there were kids and people everywhere. Both museums were great and in the end were where there all day and my feet are still sore. Dinner again was a disappointment :( Afternoon tea was good, or that could have been my sore feet simply enjoying the rest!

24 September 2010

shopping in London

Ages ago on Shoeper Woman's blog a friend of my showed me a fantastic pair of shoes. I decided I might have to try and see if I could get them. So we headed off to the Irregular Choice store in Soho. We completely failed to find the Tourist Info place on the way there, and made it to the store at 10 to 10, before it had opened. We cruised around the insane lanes and little streets, getting slightly rained on, until the store opened. To cut a long story short, I now own some lovely shoes that I will be barely able to ware. I don't want to ware them outside either cos the soles have printing on them, of the white rabbit, of Alice in Wonderland fame, in a tea pot!

After some food and a stop at the Swatch shop (Neil managed to not bring his watch), we headed back down Regent St to try and find the Info place, we eventually found it. We got paper, cos you need paper when your on holiday (I should point out this is paper in the form of brochures, not just A4 ok, I just wanted to make that clear) and headed off to Covent Garden.

Wow. I didn't even know this place existed. It was cool. Sort of an older more permanent version of Vic Market, but different. Eventually we found the outdoors stores we were looking for, to procure the extra back we need. Check, it's red. We also found the Canadian pub for a rest, and beer (or in my case cider).

From there we walked down to Trafalgar Square, where there was an irresistible earth caching opportunity, and a festival about Malaysia (yummy food present and correct). Down the road again to Embankment station and back home, another long day!

Dinner was at a nearby pub and fairly average (lets not talk about it)

23 September 2010

travel and arrival

Well, a 24hr plane flight is always going to be long. Thankfully the first 8hrs of it, from Melbourne to Hong Kong where in the dark and we had 4 seats between the two of us. I even slept! The studpied hoops they make you go through at Hong Kong (and I'm sure every other airport) are so demented, but soon we were back in the air. Unfortunately there were no spare seats on the plain this time, but I had had my chair fixed so at least it reclined now. I watched many movies. Then we arrived, I really think this flight seemed short than the last trip (in 07).

So we were meant to be pick up from the air port... by a limo. We waited for an hour... no limo :( Eventually we gave up and took the train, which was actually fine and I didn't mind that much, except for the waiting part, which I am totally shit at. We found our hotel very easily, and it is way 'posher' than I am used to, even if the building is very ugly.

Our next stop after this was the special invitation only Radley sale in Kings Road (wow, an even posher area). Any way, with Champaign in hand and my friend Eva's shopping list in mind, I proceeded to spend... quite a few pounds on handbags :) because, as Neil said, how often am I here? I should just buy them. opps :) I got two and a purse. I am using one already*

By this time it was 6pm and I was definitely starting the flag, so we grabbed a snack in a pub, that turned out to be a gay bar, which was yum and the bar men were very nice. We then came back to home base and collapsed.

*Note even though this post is dated for the right day, I wrote it a few days later