Barrel of Laughs at the Edinburgh Fringe

Barrel of Laughs at the Edinburgh Fringe

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So after my mini Euro Trip, we decided to go for a quick weekend up to Edinburgh, to see if some quick wit and sharp one liners, would help beat the post-holiday blues… Going up by train was super convenient and very fast.Edinburgh’s train station is right at its center, and so when we stepped off the train, we were overwhelmed by the amount of people and in this way it really felt as if we were at the heart of all the action .  The journey was really pleasant. We had a lovely views of the sea that I enjoyed whilst I listened to the people behind me talk. At first their voices were just background noise and then as the story progressed, my ears pricked up and I followed with closer attention. It turned out that one of the men was a descendent of Fabergé’s partners, who fled the Russian Revolution and had come to live in England. Now Fabergé’s jewel encrusted eggs are some of the most precious and most valuable objects in the world. The man admitted to having some small ones at home, including one that his mother used to wear around her neck on a gold chain. The story which ensued really felt as if it had been taken from someone’s worst nightmare. One day, on her way to work,  his mother noticed that the necklace and million pound egg had come off. In a panic she retraced her steps and found nothing. In a last desperate attempt to recover this priceless heirloom, she went to the bus depot and asked to look at the bus in which she had gone to work. After patiently waiting for it to return to the parking, she ran inside to where she had been sat. There, wedged in between the two seats, was a crumpled little gold chain and little golden egg. I didn’t know who to feel more sorry for, the stupid egg woman, who thought that the egg would be safer with her than in a vault…or the person who was sitting next to her and decided not to pick it up or take it home, because it could have been a bomb…

OR ME…Because now I realize that all I have ever wanted is a jewel encrusted egg…and it seems that I am the only person on this train that doesn’t have one…

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Here are some of the pictures that I took with my parents. I loved walking around the center. There were so many people and the crowds spilled out from bars and open air comedy shows. Pubs and clubs all had signs with the daily comedy schedules. Men in kilts played bagpipes outside of some of the nicest hotels and I loved the Harris Tweed shops, such as Walker Slater, that sold beautiful jackets and tartan blankets. Each clan has their own one and it was fun trying to find my family’s own, being that I am a quarter Scottish. One of Edinburgh’s most imposing landmarks is the Scott Monument and is the largest in the world to a writer. It is made out of sandstone and stands in Princes Street Gardens in Edinburgh, opposite the Jenners department store on Princes Street and near to Edinburgh Waverley Railway Station, which is named for one of Walter Scott’s novels. The tower  has a series of viewing platforms reached by a series of narrow spiral staircases giving panoramic views of central Edinburgh and its surroundings. The highest platform is reached by a total of 287 steps and those who climb the steps can obtain a certificate commemorating their achievement.

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For me one of the best things that we did that weekend was to go for a walk up Carlton Hill to the Royal Observatory. From there you can get a great view of the city and also of the Queen’s Castle and Royal Residence, Balmoral. You can also get up and personal with the Nelson Monument and its dropping ball. I had been there a few times before, once for New Year’s Eve, as its a great place to watch the fireworks and also once for a sunrise whiskey when my brother got married. We didn’t have time to do  everything this time so hopefully we will be able to go back soon!DSC_1032

In the meantime here are some of my favorite jokes from this year’s fringe:

1. “I’ve decided to sell my hoover…well, it was just collecting dust.” – Tim Vine

2. ” I did a gig at a fertility clinic. I got a standing ovulation” – Tim Vine

3. “Always leave them wanting more, my uncle used to say to me. Which is why he lost his job in disaster relief.” – Mark Watson

4. “I wanted to do a show about feminism. But my husband wouldn’t let me.”  – Ria Lina

5. “Miley Cyrus. You know when she was born? 1992. I’ve got condiments in my cupboard older than that.” – Lucy Beaumont

6. “You have to be careful in my country because we have bad cars and good wine, a dangerous combination.” – Francesco De Carlo

Laugh???? Eeek… I am almost pissed myself!!!! ;P

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Filming Under Milk Wood, Tie Dye and the Blue Lagoon

Filming Under Milk Wood, Tie Dye and the Blue Lagoon

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For our final day in Wales we were lucky enough to see the filming of the new adaption of Dylan Thomas’s Under Milk Wood, a drama in which an omniscient narrator invites the audience to listen to the dreams and innermost thoughts of the inhabitants of a fictional small Welsh fishing village Llareggub, which backwards spells bugger all.

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The little town of Solva where the director had chosen to set this particular adaptation was really lovely. Passed rows of colorful houses, we parked next to an estuary full of miniature fishing boats. We walked along the waters edge and gazed at the reflection of the hills in the still water. The scenes which we witnessed were being filmed in a specially built stone chapel over looking the river. Fake anchors, a majestic owl, crabbing cages, wooden boats and all sorts of various props lay strewn around the set.

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Suddenly after a lot of waiting there was a cry of “Action!” after which a torrent of water was released and gushed through the chapel full of children in costumes. The scene was surreal as in a dream and limbs, including hands and feet hung from the ceiling. A gaunt, white faced “dead corpse” was later carried out and after the scene was concluded the woman was unlaced and her little head bobbed up and down. There was a lot of waiting and I thought how fake everything was. I like to think that what I am watching is real and I have a bitter sweat relationship in this way with romantic comedies (everything in my life must surely be as fun!), horror movies (if I don’t turn my bed side light on within the next 3 seconds I WILL die) and so all this forensic cutting and stopping and waiting, make-up and lines could only be compared with coming face to face with the Television Grinch.

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For my time on set I wore my white skorts, a long tie dye top, which I love to wear in the summer. I am really loving Kimonos at the moment so I have decided to turn my beach sarong, which has some great geometric shapes and colors into one.   I have found that sarongs are often really vibrant colors and great patterns and are sufficiently long for this. In fact they look a lot better than most Kimonos which are sold in the shops which are made of flimsy material and have rubbish flower patterns or thin tassels on the bottom. For shoes I wore my Top Shop ankle boots, a stylish/festival alternative to trainers and mountain boots.

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After seeing the filming, we went back to the sea and walked along another stretch of the Pembrokeshire Coastal Path. This walk is particularly picturesque and even though the evening had started to cloud over it was the one that I liked the most during our stay. The destination is a large deep lagoon, which once was a mine shaft. When the mine was finally closed, instead of leave a large chasm in the side of the mountain, one of the side walls was blown out which enable sea water to flow into the crevasse, fill it up and blend it into its natural surroundings. It is extremely deep and the water is icy blue and very cold. I loved how the hewn rock was so ragged and the blown out hole really created some great relief in the cliff face. A little stone turret loomed up in the distance and the whole thing really reminded me of a scene from  Game of Thrones.

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WEARING

TIE DYE TOP – ZARA

ANKLE BOOTS – TOP SHOP (sold out)

WHITE SHORTS – ALI EXPRESS

KIMONO BEACH SARONG – Collioure, France

Once we had reached over the top of the cliffs and had looked down upon the lagoon, the abandoned castle and the many little rock islands that protruded from the sea we turned back and drove to the little town of Porthgain. This has a little harbor and a great view of the processing plant which used to connect to the mine. This is built into the cliff face and large slabs of rusty metal adorn the rock. It is very impressive. It was here, at the Shed, a boutique little restaurant that we had the best fish and chips that we had ever tasted. With a range of different fresh fish, if you come to this part of the world, you should definitely eat here. We had the lime and coconut cheesecake with lemon sorbet and the Tia Maria chocolate tart with coffee ice cream and I could not recommend these enough.

An absolutely great last day and all I can say is that I hope to see Wales in such fine form next time we come 🙂

 

Sailor Stripes and Triangle Skorts for St David’s

Sailor Stripes and Triangle Skorts for St David’s

St David’s oddly enough is not a village or a town, but a city. In fact it is the smallest city in the whole of the United Kingdom. Its Cathedral is majestic and seems out of place with the quaint little houses and small town center. Indeed this was once an importance place, not only for religion but for industry and trade. A passage to American could even be bought for £4 from close by.

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For our outing I wore a short crop sailor top which has blue, white and black stripes and white skort. I combined it with my a long Kimono style jumper and Guess flip flops which have silver charms including an anchor and a ship’s wheel. I really liked Kim Kardashian’s recent rope dress look and so I thought this would be a great way of getting into the sea fairing spirit!

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David’s Cathedral stands on the site of the monastery he founded in the Glyn Rhosyn valley of Pembrokeshire. The Cathedral was built on a slope and its pillars have buckled under the weight of the ancient lead roof. I really liked the Cathedral’s engraved wooden roof. The grounds are beautiful and we had a great time walking over little bridges and streams. The Goat Gallery sold some beautiful art and souvenirs and I just loved their tea cups and embroidery. Another must is Giovanni’s Ice Cream parlor where I ate (not exaggerating), the best double scoop I have ever tried. Recommended flavour Butterscotch. Finally if you get a chance to go, go say Hi! to my parents who are the artists in residence at Oriel y Parc, before going back to the sea for a swim in the afternoon! 🙂

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St David is the patron Saint of Wales and is said to have been born close by in a small chapel. He became renowned as a teacher and preacher, founding monastic settlements and churches in Wales and Brittany. St David’s Cathedral stands on the site of the monastery he founded in the Glyn Rhosyn valley of Pembrokeshire.

WEARING

White Skorts – ALI EXPRESS

Vintage Sailor Stripe top

Customized glasses – OAKLEY

Wedge Flip Flops – GUESS

Beige Kimono Jumper – EAST

Walking Amongst the Gods

Walking Amongst the Gods

There is something about the rocks, the wilderness of the sea and the vast openness of the mountains which is humbling. Nature’s power is the reminder that long before we were here and long after we are gone will life continue. The Earth rises and falls, the cliffs are dashed and broken. Contours are made and remade and plants die and are reborn. Walking to St David’s Head on a wild windy road flanked by mountains and water I really felt the presence of the past. Ancient monuments showing signs of early occupation, including, an iron age cliff fort, prehistoric settlements and stone circles made this journey more akin to a quest of one of the characters in Lord of the Rings or Game of Thrones. When the storms hit a ship wreck and a huge prehistoric forests were unearthed. We ate out pic-nic on large rocks which had been stacked up on on top of the other by the wind and the water.

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My outfit choice was deeply influenced by clothes worn by ancient civilizations. Short tops and long skirts. It was hot, so I wore my Finder Keepers Bustier. I really liked the triangle neck and I found that if I put it over my head, I could bend half of it over to turn it into a thick crop top with triangle edges. This turns it more into a neck collar, similar to the fashion worn by Egyptians and so I thought it fitting to wear it for my journey to this sacred place. We were going swimming and bathed in little coves along our walk. I wore a long white and gold cotton wrap as a skirt and rolled down the top. I really liked the new Chanel dresses that have thick waist bands as this makes actual waists look thinner. I combined it all with a double amber bracelet and top shop ankle boots.

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WEARING

One Step Ahead Le Bustier – FINDERS KEEPERS (sizes very! small)

Turkish Sarong as a skirt

Ankle Boots  – TOP SHOP (sold out)

Amber Beads from Lithuania

 

Arrival and Pembrokeshire Coastal Path

Arrival and Pembrokeshire Coastal Path

A visit to see my parents who are the artists in residence at Oriel y Park in St Davids was a great excuse to come to this beautiful part of the world. Our place overlooked the sea and was just a short walk two minute walk to the Pembrokeshire Coast Path National trail which ran above dark cliffs and  overlooked a pretty secluded private beach.

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What an incredible part of the world! On our first day we ventured down the grassy banks and along the flower lined paths. Thick gorse bushes have been grown specially to protect walkers from the sudden drops. Our perched position meant that we could see the silver glistening sea, St David’s Head in the distance and the famous Ramsay Island. As we walked our eyes followed the beautiful natural undulations of the earth. Little coves and cut off beaches, ship wrecks, eroded stones and pitch black caves. The sea was turquoise, the sand shone yellow in the summer sun.

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From St Dogmaels in the north to Amroth in the south, the trail covers almost every kind of maritime landscape from steep limestone cliffs, undulating red sandstone bays, volcanic headlands, beaches, estuaries and flooded glacial valleys.  – See more at: http://www.visitpembrokeshire.com/explore-pembrokeshire/coast-path/#sthash.3vbV7uIt.dpuf

 I particularly loved the coastal flowers and the plants which had grown and flourished on the cliff tops. During our time in St Davids we didn’t walk the whole of the path, but instead chose to do select little walks. Walking the whole trail takes between 10-15 days and the ascents and descents are apparently equivalent to 35,000 feet, the same as climbing Mt Everest! On our first day, we walked from where we were staying to Whitesands, a large beach popular with surfers and brave swimmers alike. The wind was strong and after dipping our toes in the water we went to the little cafe and had ice creams. After that we ventured back and after watching the sun go down I ate my first summer BBQ!

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Two great things to do whilst in St Davids is to have a surfing lesson if you have never done so or else take a boat trip to Ramsay Island for a spot of bird, whale and sea watching!

Completing the Coast Path in one go, taking on average between 10 to 15 days, is quite an undertaking. The ascents and descent are said to be the equivalent of climbing Mount Everest; 35,000 feet!  – See more at: http://www.visitpembrokeshire.com/explore-pembrokeshire/coast-path/#sthash.3vbV7uIt.dpuf
Completing the Coast Path in one go, taking on average between 10 to 15 days, is quite an undertaking. The ascents and descent are said to be the equivalent of climbing Mount Everest; 35,000 feet!  – See more at: http://www.visitpembrokeshire.com/explore-pembrokeshire/coast-path/#sthash.3vbV7uIt.dpuf
Completing the Coast Path in one go, taking on average between 10 to 15 days, is quite an undertaking. The ascents and descent are said to be the equivalent of climbing Mount Everest; 35,000 feet!  – See more at: http://www.visitpembrokeshire.com/explore-pembrokeshire/coast-path/#sthash.3vbV7uIt.dpuf
Completing the Coast Path in one go, taking on average between 10 to 15 days, is quite an undertaking. The ascents and descent are said to be the equivalent of climbing Mount Everest; 35,000 feet!  – See more at: http://www.visitpembrokeshire.com/explore-pembrokeshire/coast-path/#sthash.3vbV7uIt.dpuf

London’s Secret Umbrella Street

London’s Secret Umbrella Street

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Yesterday we went to the very busy and trendy borough market, full of delicatessen produce from french cheeses to Spanish meats to exotic spices.

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In the shadows of the glistening shard there lies tucked behind windy roads, cobbled streets and tall brick warehouses an enchanted courtyard filled with Mary Poppins Magic and vivid color. I had read about this, but had never seen it myself, a quaint little square decorated with a canape of multicolored umbrellas. Had we not known where to go we would never have found it, this really is secret London at its best. The exact address of the Umbrella Street is just off Park Street in the yard.

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I wore my new CameoCa Bow Skirt which came from Fashion Bunker in Australia. I made this the feature piece of my outfit and combined it with tribal jewellery and an oriental patterned top. I thought that the black tie of the top went well with the black of the skirt. It wasn’t that hot so I wore an angular black blazer. This look is more formal and serious and so I slicked my hair back too and wore black heels to create a catwalk effect. Let me know what you think and also if you know of any cool hidden spots in London or in your home city which people should check out if they ever visit?

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WEARING

Bow Skirt – CAMEO

bought from Fashion Bunker ( WARNING! VAT and Tax charges for UK deliveries NOT INCLUDED!)

Oriental cut out back top with black tie bow – BAY

Black blazer – ZARA (sold out)

Black peep toe boots – JANE NORMAN

Open toe ankle boots – JANE NORMAN

 

Flowers in My Head

Flowers in My Head

I have one last exam left and then I am off to Wales followed by Morocco. I wanted to do some posts before I leave London for the summer on the things that I get up to, where I live and the secret gems and hide away that are not featured in the guide books. So I’m going to start off by talking the new Olympic park which I can see from my kitchen window.

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Right now it is a great time to go to walk along the Green Way to the Stadium as all the flowers are out. This walk is really nice as you can see the city over in the distance and there is a great sense of space and openness.  I love having coffee at the Green Way Cafe where they have art exhibitions, a piano often played by passing by cyclists and an overgrown garden before arriving at the busy shopping mall just minutes away. This wild walk makes a change from my usual haunt, Victoria Park which has been voted London’s best park in 2014.

I wore a white floral lace top which is really light and instead of combining it with denim shorts I decided to go for cotton brown ones, which are more comfortable. This meant that I was able to run across the fields and pick flowers without worrying about them getting dirty or without being able to move. For accessories I wore hand made earrings from Lithuania which are really delicate and feminine.

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Have you been to the Olympic park yet? If so what did you think about it? Which one is your favorite London park?

WEARING

Neon Rose Lace vest top – HOUSE OF FRASER

Brown Cotton Shorts – PRIMARK (sold out)

Sunglasses – TRUSSARDI

Hand-made earrings from Vilnius Lithuania

Grey Wedge Embellished Sandals  from Barcelona

 

Sunny Sunday in Brighton

Sunny Sunday in Brighton

We woke up late and after some deliberation, we decided that a great thing to do on a sunny Sunday afternoon was to get the car and go on a day trip to the seaside town of Brighton.Apparently we weren’t the only other ones who had decided to do that…in fact we must have crossed or met half of London on the short narrow lanes which then finally turned into the motorway leading to the South. Brighton was packed. It was getting quite late by now (2pm), we hadn’t arrived and hadn’t had our fill of Sunday brunch yet as anticipated. We hadn’t even stopped for morning coffee or water and I was starting to feel a bit sick as a consequence. We circled the double yellow lines like bees around honey and we  eventually squeezed into a tiny space behind some warehouse at a parking with a maximum 2 hour stay. Desperate times called for desperate measures, we would just have to return to the car when our time was up. For 2 hours, £2. Seemed simple enough…but alas no change. After turning out all the coats, looking under every seat, in every glove compartment, unzipping and pulling out the contents of every bag pocket, we just couldn’t muster up more than 75p in loose change. The machine wouldn’t take anything less than £1, so I waited in the car like roasting dog waiting to be saved by the RSPCA whilst my boyfriend went off on a Bear Grills mission into Brighton to find a cash machine or else a shop where he could buy something with a note and get change. Easier said than done on a Sunday, but luckily for me, he had cracked a window so it was all good.

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Once the drama was over and the ticket paid for, we set off down to the sea front. The sea was blue, and the pier was bustling with people. I loved seeing the bravest of the brave swim in the freezing water with smiles on their faces. We hobbled along the cobbled beach and ate ice creams under the hot sun. A great thing to do is to walk right to the end of the Pier for a great view of Brighton and the water.

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A large fairest wheel spun lazily in the soft warm breeze and multicolored wind turbines fluttered. The lights of the pier shone brightly and the Union Jack bobbed proudly. Large seagulls and plastic buckets and spades, candy floss and slush puppies. I enjoyed the view from a blue and white stripped deck chair and starred out at the charred remains of the old pier.

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After some fish and chips, we walked along the promenade, past the many surfing shops and terrace bars. There was live music and the atmosphere was great. Were we really in Britain still, or had we been transported to Promenade des Anglais in Nice?

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There was a mini convention, which was pretty much the icing on the Great British Bake-Off Blancmange. My favourite was a hot pink number, which had had the frame cut in half to reduce the mini in size. It was all kitted out despite its age and even had a bottle of nitrous oxide on the back.

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We had gone clubbing the night before and I had stayed at my boyfriends house. Not wanting to do the walk of shame or look too much like Coyote Ugly, I decided to wear one of his smallest shirts over my dress. Had I had a belt I would have worn a slightly longer one as a dress and just got rid of my party attire altogether. I combined it with my espadrilles and sun glasses for an effortless look. So next time, forget the boyfriend jeans and go for the boyfriend shirt 😉

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WEARING

Le Pliage Handbag – LONGCHAMPS

Bandage dress- FRENCH CONNECTION (sold out)

Espadrilles – ZARA (sold out)

Sunglasses – TRUSSARDI (sold out)

Boyfriend shirt