Paddington Station

Heathrow Express

So where were we? Ah yes, just landing at London Heathrow! We took the Heathrow Express to Paddington Station, which remains part of my favorite ritual of returning back to London. There is just a certain peace in that travel – something about the homes whizzing past, the calming British accents on the overhead speaker, the quick news roundup — the 15 minute trip is one of my faves!

And then it’s Paddington Station, which still feels familiar from when I used to live here – the soup cart, Delice de France and Burger King is still there, you still have to pay to use the toilets, but there’s more construction going on! More retail and food stores in the works! It’s enough new and old to make me feel that I have returned!

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Close to 100,000 protest in Women’s March in London

Women's March London

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Wow – what an inspiring, historic turnout of protestors across the globe yesterday! London, alone, had close to 100,000 protestors in opposition to Donald Trump’s presidency, which included London mayor Sadiq Khan.

London, I love you!

Watch the video!

BBC’s subtitle blunder is hilarious

Picture it. Today. Inauguration Day for Donald Trump (boo….) and BBC delivers this peach of a blunder, airing subtitles to BBC children’s program “The Dumping Ground” over their live coverage of the inauguration.

In flight entertainment

On my recent trip from San Francisco to London (and back), I had 10 hours to kill. I was tempted by the prospect of taking a Zzzquil and waking up refreshed (if a little hungry), but in the end, I had a cocktail and wine with dinner and missed that elusive window (and then suffered the rest of the journey, kicking myself for not taking the Zzzquil and being so weak!).

To pass the time, I had a couple of go-to’s: Read the rest of this entry

Happy 2017!

Hello and happy 2017!

I’ve recently returned from a trip back to the United Kingdom — our last trip back was in 2013 — and have much to share about our travels. We had a fabulous visit, spending nearly three weeks seeing family and friends in the U.K. and France — with stops in London, Birmingham, Bedfordshire, Colchester and Paris. It was quite a whirlwind trip, but a fun mix of places we were familiar with and new spots we hadn’t been before.

I’ll share more in the coming weeks but wanted to just wish everyone a happy new year and hope that you had a wonderful winter break!

Here are a few shots from our flight over to London on Virgin Atlantic – we traveled economy this time (at about $800 per ticket before Christmas!) — and there were some new features, including purple lighted cabins, no more window shades (but the option to darken your window with a button) and electronic chargers! And check out our clear view of London from the sky!

window view

Charge up

Purple lighted cabin

sky view of London

Views of London

R.I.P. AA Gill

AA Gill

AA Gill

I was very sad to hear that Sunday Times columnist and TV and restaurant critic AA Gill has passed away.

Oh 2016, you just can’t let up, can you?

Gill, age 62, had what he deemed the “full English” of cancers and had only revealed his illness three weeks ago. The Sunday Times posted the announcement this morning. The Sunday Times will be publishing an article he had written about coming to terms with his cancer in tomorrow’s Sunday Times Magazine.

And I should add, if you haven’t had the chance to read the London Sunday Times Magazine, do check it out. If not tomorrow, then when?

I continue to be awed and inspired by the bright, irreverent and often hilarious feature writing and first-person columns that are published in British newspapers and the Sunday Times Magazine is a perfect example (much better than the New York Times Magazine, in my humble opinion).

Tea drinking test

a cup of tea

Buzzfeed thinks they know how you drink your tea from your answers to just seven random questions. Are they right? Well, take the test and see for yourself.

In my case, they pegged me for a milk-and-one-sugar kind of gal, which I am not. But perhaps my choice of Lionel Ritchie mug made them think I was a bigger softie than I am. Hello?

Dress like Mrs. Claus

Mrs. Claus I shared the latest Marks and Spencer’s Christmas advert yesterday, but did you know that you, too, can dress like Mrs. Claus from the advert?

I really love this concept. You can buy her dress, her jacket, her sweater or you can buy the teenage sister’s shoes! It’s the ultimate sell. Why can’t all ads be like this?

I’m filled with the same level of glee as when I discovered I could raid the wardrobe of Emma Pillsbury from “Glee” or Jess from “New Girl.”

Marks & Spencer’s Christmas advert

Following my post yesterday about John Lewis’s Christmas advert, I present an alternative take on the Christmas advert with Marks & Spencer‘s latest.

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John Lewis Christmas advert 2016

You know Christmas isn’t Christmas until the John Lewis advert comes out!

The last couple of John Lewis Christmas adverts have been kind of a bust for me (especially the weird man in the moon advert from last year, which I didn’t even blog about because it was so ridiculous – but I did laugh at the Guardian’s take on it. As an aside, this style of writing is why British newspapers completely kick American newspapers’ big fat bums.)

And without further ado, here is this year’s advert — which I really like. Animals bouncing on trampolines! It’s simple pleasure tied up in a big red bow!

What do you think? Yay or nay?