dear_prudence: (Default)
all that remains in the great travel log is to fill you in on what we got up to on our last few days in london...

victoria and albert museum )

the next day saj and i went for another jaunt in the city. we went to trafalgar square, saw lord nelson, and concluded that he must have been compensating for something:

then we went to the national portrait gallery

there were so many interesting interpretations of what a portrait actually is, and such a broad representation of how that has evolved through history. it was also interesting to see how the subjects of the paintings changed (from aristocrats and politicians to actors and athletes, with many others in between)

after that adventure we met up with [ profile] daniel_bethany and [ profile] nixwilliams and went to have drinks, CHIPS, and camden-shopping with a friend called lisa (who saj used to work with at acmi, but who now lives in london).
in camden with lisa )

the next day saj went to essex to educate some chavs, and [ profile] daniel_bethany and [ profile] nixwilliams and i went to the museum of natural history.
it was one of the coolest places i have ever been.
botany, ornithology, geekology... )

i was indulged in a trip to harrods after that, and was far too busy looking at the shiny things to take many photos - i couldn't resist this pearler of an opportunity, though:


the next day we went back into the city again. this time the others went to the borough mrkets and did gross things lik eat cheese and brownies and buy teacups. i went to see 'shakespeare's globe' (which, of course, was not shakespeare's actual globe, but a reconstruction). i took a tour, on which i was told very little that i didn't already know, but it was very amusing to be shown around the theatre and to imagine a smelly, bawdy crowd of elizabethan sensation-seekers in place of the reverent american tourists.

and that's where the photos run out. the last day of the trip, while involving a lovely walk at hampstead heath, was a busy one involving packing and organising and planning etc, so i was too distracted to get ye olde pikture-clicker out.

thanks for reading my rants. i hope you had some vicarious fun!
dear_prudence: (Default)
hello from the big bouncing bosoms of ye olde home-and-heart-land. we survived 24 hours in transit and got here at lunchtime.

we were met by a lovely driver (thanks mama ros!) who wore a very smart hat, and only smirked a little bit when we mentioned that we had had to pay excess baggage (burke and wills were lighter travelers than us. for serious.)

my mummy was here when we got home and she made us tea and ushered us into showers, and then served us homemade soup and chickpea pancakes. she had already cleaned the whole house, put fresh sheets on our bed, etc, before we got here. she let us sleep for an hour, then made us go for a walk, came with me to get groceries, and soon it will be a totally legitimate time to go to bed! huzzah!

will post photos of last days in london soon. possibly tonight. possibly tomorrow. we'll see how long i stay conscious!
dear_prudence: (Default)
we spent most of our last full day in france in versailles. it was beautiful...

i am a woman of mystery!

the mirror pool

sajee in the king's garden

me in the king's garden (this was my favourite part of the gardens)

the sitting room in marie antoinette's house

view of the lake at marie antoinette's hamlet

statue in 'the temple of love' at marie antoinette's house

in marie antoinette's gardens

so beautiful...
dear_prudence: (Default)
hello again! london continues to be very pleasant, and we are very comfortable and well looked after at chez katz. it's so lovely of dan's folks to put us up like this in their beautiful home!

i left off at the end of our second day in paris.

the next day began with a walk through the marais (the suburb of paris where we were staying), and a look at some stalls at a local market

when have i ever passed up an opportunity to take photos of flowers?

a mysterious mushroom tree (there was no angle to take this photo from that didn't have a busy background - but if you look hard enough you get the idea :p)

fromage! nomnomnom!

our walk took us to a garden with a name that were completely unable to pronounce. we sat there for a while and ate grapes and drank orangina. very pleasant on such a bright sunny day.

then we took the metro up to montmatre to see sacre coeur. here is sajee, with the view from sacre coeur spread out behind her:

the cathedral is a beautiful sight - especially when set against a bright blue sky

inside sacre coeur

i'm not sure how i personally feel about the catholic god, but i do respond to the idea of the virgin mary. whoever she was i'm certain she was an extraordinary woman. i lit a candle and placed it at her feet with a prayer for mothers and children, and for courage, compassion, and love.

we had lunch in montmatre in a little cafe where a man played cello to the diners. my salad had five kinds of cheese in it. win!

in the afternoon we went for a drive around the city and saw some of the big sights again. it was such a lovely day, and this was the perfect way to finish it.

dear_prudence: (Default)
day two in paris! it involved a trip to the eiffel tower:

there were lots of really pushy, and kind of scary guys selling trinkets and souvenirs there, but we ignored them and just took in the scale of the icon before us. we walked right underneath the tower, and considered going up, but i decided it was a wee bit too scary. the national police standing around with berets and big fat guns didn't do a lot to create a mood of confidence and calm...

i wanted to be at least a little bit fashionable in paris, so i was wearing my cute flats, as i had done the day before. they didn't treat my feet kindly, so we had to make a few stops here and there to reapply bandaids... (by the end of the day we'd been to lafayette to buy me a pair of runners *sadface* - but that was yet to come!)

the next stop is what in retrospect was my favourite part of the whole paris experience - the musée d'orsay. the building was incredible, with all the little galleries sprouting off from the bright, airy main hall. we saw as much as we could...

paris is so full of incredible art that i am a bit loath to spend too much time gawking at the classic pieces. i could honestly care less about david or the mona lisa (sorry, [Bad username or site: piecesofalice!!! @], but there's something about the work of the impressionists that you just have to see 'in real life'. it makes sense - the whole point of impressionism being about the interplay of colour and light - that's something that just never translates on prints or postcards... i don't now. i'm rambling.

as we admired some of the pictures in the van gough gallery we were kindly informed by another australian tourist that the picture we were looking at was "really famous". armed with this invaluable insight i found that i could truly appreciate the rest of my d'orsay experience. i made sure to demonstrate just how awed and excited i was by the "really famous" pieces:

we had lunch, in the d'orsay restaurant, with a goat and a faun. saj struck up quite a friendship with the goat in particular:

joan d'arc in the sculpture gallery

behind the clock face (we have a photo like this of sajee at home from when she visited paris in her gap year - this one can go next to it now! :D )

balloon sculpture on the seine outside the gallery

there was time for one more stop that day. one very important stop - the chanel store on rue cambon.

this is the very bag i received my purchases in (my perfume, some lipstick and some mascara). i found a bag i quite liked. but it was 2000 euro, so i decided that maybe i'd pick it up next time XD

more from paris soon! xoxoxoxoxox
dear_prudence: (Default)
bonjour! we are now back in london after a wonderful few days in paris. last night we were honoured with an invitation to spend rosh hashanah with the katz family, which involved much good food, wine and merriment, so i've left updating til this morning. i'm going to have to report on the paris leg of our journey in several parts, but i'm hoping to do that over the course of the day.

so! we had an uneventful flight and took the most expensive taxi ride of our lives to our little apartment in rue du temple in the marais. it was the cutest, frenchiest apartment you can imagine. to get to it you had to climb up four flights of old wooden stairs that got narrower and more rickety as you went. there was one more staircase once actually inside, and you could actually see roof tiles between the steps - we were staying on the roof! it had a curved ceiling with exposed beams so it felt like sleeping in an upturned boat. on the roof. it was so cool!

a short trip to the monoprix down the street saw us set up with the parisian necessities:

then we had an earlyish night.

the next day we started with a visit to the glorious and imposing notre dame. on the way we passed this very interesting fountain:

all the little contraptions in it whizzed and turned and moved with the water flowing through them. it was very cool.

i'm thinking of making a book entitled 'stained glass windows i have loved' - i'm pretty sure i already have enough material just from this one trip

the pope candles puzzled us until we found out a few days later that he'd recently visited the city

i was very impressed with the general beauty and splendor of the whole cathedral, and then we rounded a corner, i saw this, and it absolutely took my breath away. there was something about the richness of the purple glass, and the sheer size and delicate beauty of the whole thing that just stopped me, gaping, in my tracks.

after notre dame we went for a walk down the seine to the louvre.

i have been very nervous about this ever since we decided to come to paris - so much wonderful art, so impossible to take it all in! we decided to have lunch intheir restaurant (very delicious, btw!), look over a plan of the gallery, and just choose a section. we ended up taking in most of the richelieu wing, including the 15th-17th century dutch and german paintings, as well as some renaissance & medieval tapestries and objets d'art.

after all that excitement, and serious sensory overload, we had to have a nice long sit in les jardins des tuileries with some macaroons. oh yeah, they're gluten free! *happy dance*

stay tuned for the next installment! ♥
dear_prudence: (Default)
today was a quiet day. we went to the pump rooms for tea (just like austen heroines).

the pump room chandelier. i was too busy drinking tea and eating gluten free lemon drizzle cake to take any more photos!

then we went to "1 royal crescent", a house that has been decorated in the georgian style. it was very beautifully furnished, and full of interesting artifacts, but photography wasn't permitted (v. annoying as i would have liked to take lots of pics). you'll have to content yourself with the website's virtual tour if you want to see it.

from there it was a short walk to the bath botanic gardens. you all know how much i hate botanic gardens...

+7 under here )

then we came back to the b&b for a nap and it's suddenly quarter past eight. we couldn't find anywhere to go for dinner so i am eating some kind of nut-and-seed bar. slowly.
tomorrow we're off to paris, and i don't know whether we'll be able to get internet access there. if i can update, i will, but if you don't hear from me for a few days don't go calling the embassies or anything.

*big love*
dear_prudence: (Default)
hello from the beautiful city of bath!

a quick catch up on the last couple of days - mostly in photo form (again) :)

we had a lovely last morning in stratford-upon-avon. we visited the beautiful churchyard of the holy trinity church more graves, and some weeping willows )

then it was time for a last stroll through the rsc gardens...

a farewell kiss for mr tennant...

and we drove to bath - we took a stroll around in the evening light and it was really beautiful

today we have been wandering happily around bath - home of jane austen, pretty architecture, and other cool stuff )

i really love this city. it's so old and so majestic, and it's easy to imagine yourself right into a jane austen novel here. am very tired now, though, so i won't ramble any more. big kisses to you all xoxoxoxox
dear_prudence: (Default)
hiiiii! we're in LONDON! hahahaahahah!!!

we're staying with [ profile] daniel_bethany's family, and it is really lovely. we had intended to be on our way to goring by now, where j, d & sj will begin thier walk tomorrow, but saj's bag was lost by the airline and we have to wait for it to be delivered here before we can move on. we are hoping that happens this afternoon. cross your fingers for us!

in the mean time it is very lovely to be here. our hosts have the most beautiful home, and it is very english... look )

yesterday, since we arrived at around 7am we decided that it would be bad for our jet-lag to go to bed, so j & d too us on a little trip to hampstead heath, and i think you'll agree that it is prettier than anything... )

after all that we stopped at a tea house for, surprisingly enough, some tea, and went to see keats' house (yes, the actual keats - i fucking love this country) which was closed, but still there to be gawked at from the outside.

i was convinced i was finwe and that jet lag wasn't going to hit me, but then i curled up on the couch and was pretty much instantly unconscious.
dear_prudence: (Default)
hello from the united arab emirates!

i wish we had time to go and see more of this place. they've made the airport so beautiful that i can only imagine how wonderful the rest of it must be.
when you walk into the central hub, this is what you see:

everything is domed and tiled. it's more than utilitarian. it's just lovely.
muslims are celebrating the holy month of ramadan, so everything is decorated with lamps, moons and stars. it's so pretty. also, i'm glad we've flown in at night because it means we can eat if we want to. the whole nation is fasting during daylight hours and it is forbidden to eat in public places.
in the airport everything is in english as well as arabic, and all the staff speak english so we have had no trouble communicating with people. announcements on the plane were in english and arabic too. arabic sounds so lyrical, and the script is so elegant. i think i'd like to come back here one day and actually go and spend time finding out about this place and its people.

i had an asthma attack on the plane, but they had ventolin so it was fine. i got to go up to the front of the plane and sit in the first class lounge while they found me a puffer in the first aid kit.
apart from that, the flight was reasonably uneventful. i did some sewing, watched 'made of honour' (one of the worst movies i've ever seen), an episode of red dwarf, read a bit and, most importantly, slept. i have no idea how long i slept for, but it was definitely more than half the 14 hour journey.
saj didn't sleep as much as i did, but she watched more movies. i think she's pretty tired now. poor duck.

we board our flight to london pretty soon, so i'm off for now!
dear_prudence: (Default)
i bet you thought you'd have to wait a while to hear from me. hah.

we've flown to sydney where we are now lounging hilariously in the fancy-pplz lounge, as we have fancy-pplz tickets.
we're nomming brie and drinking champagne and baileys.

SAJEE'S BAG WEIGHED MORE THAN MINE! this has never, ever happened. ever! hahahah! (Ed: I would like to point out that my bag has hiking boots and a bulky backpack and a present for M. Tennant and a thermos and MANY OTHER HIKERLY THINGS! I am letting her gloat but I know in my heart that my bag really did weigh less. *shifty eyes*)
rattus! she hacked while i was on the loo!

i know we have only been on the road for half a day but i already have a story to tell you:
on my way through security i was stopped and the security guy said he needed to search through my bag. naturally, i acquiesced, as he explained that i had a large pair of scissors in there. i explained that it was an accident, and he was really nice about it. it turns out i'd chucked my pencil case in there without checking it and they were in there. the moral of the story is that while airport security may be paranoid, they don't necessarily assume you're trying to kill people.
i'd say it helped that i'm a rich young white woman, but i'm just glad not to have been cavity searched.

so, cheers from sydney!


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