Sunday, 29 July 2007

Invading UK11: Southampton

As i was recently promoted in work, and as i felt really depressed in the last few days onboard the Bluefin, my dear Erik insisted i need a nice break in a new place just to relax, enjoy my time and basically just wander around. Well, he decided to make me a surprise and as i like surprises i didn't ask much about it, and just patiently, like a good girl, waited for it.

On the last Friday before flying home, Erik met me after work, took me to the train station, and till the moment i was down on the platform i didn't know where we were going, then it turned out to be Southampton.

The journey took about two hours, passing by beautiful fields (full of rabbits ) and i actually enjoyed my ride. Reaching there, we looked at a city map and decided to walk to our hotel at the waterfront.

The first thing that really impressed us both was the local accent, i needed to fully concentrate to get what the girl at the reception desk was telling me while Erik almost didn't get a word she said The rooms turned out to be really nice, nice comfy beds, big windows, beautiful strong showers!! (after the humiliating one i had in my room in Gatwick) with a full range of good products there, i would say one of the hotels with my stamp of approval (Next to Marriott Warsaw "the best ever", Ramada Doha and Hilton Aberdeen). The evening was spent mostly chatting and relaxing, i also fell asleep early, i so much needed this change.

Next day breakfast in the room, then me and Erik had a long walk around the city and its waterfront, the weather was perfect, sunny and warm...We walked all around then back to the city center where we had dinner at a Greek restaurant and both enjoyed it a lot. The thing special about that city is the enormous amount of old walls encircling and penetrating the city, they give it a really nice and gothic feel.

Then we navigated back to the hotel, had tea/coffee, chatted some more and i slept as long as i wanted, with no alarm clocks, no work, no worries.

Sunday morning, breakfast in the hotel's sun lit restaurant, more walking around then off to the station to go back to Gatwick. I didn't take any pictures though and that's the only thing i'm sad about

But all in all, this was one of my best weekends ever ... Thanks Erik

Friday, 27 July 2007

Invading UK10: Mamma mia!

You can't live close to London, the city of musicals, and never see one. And that's exactly what i did, took my mom to see Mamma mia.

The show was loads of fun, regardless of the simplicity of the story itself, all the singing dancing and choreograohy which was really impressing just makes the show.

It's two and a half hours of pleasure, i enjoyed it a lot and even found an ABBA song that i really like: "Don't go wasting your emotion" Cool, and if re-released now, this will be a hit again, guaranteed!

Thursday, 26 July 2007

Invading UK9: Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire

Another place i go to because of my mother, on Saturday after some shopping in London we headed to St.Pancras station from where we took the train to Nottingham. The first thing i was really impressed by is how fast this train was compared to the ones i usually take to London or Brighton or anywhere in Sussex and London areas. It overran two of the Bedford trians on the go

The trip was nice, fast and not without some pleasure for the stomach We arrived almost at 8p.m. so there wasn't much to do but a light supper at the place of my mother's friends, loads of chatting and laughing and then going to bed. The lady is one year older than me, a very nice Russian girl married to a very nice English man.

The next day the fun started, they took us to Chatsworth which is the property of the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire, who have a "holiday house" there in Derbyshire, which is actually quite a big mansion with huge gardens around that they open it for public, the palace didn't impress me that much, it's just like any other palace although they have some really impressing pieces of art in there...

The gardens are the best, they have a garden of roses, a rock garden, a tree maze (which was fun ) Loads of different birds, ponds with fish and a huge fountain in the middle of a big pond right at the back of their palace.

The stables were another impressive thing, they are actually not stables anymore, they were turned into a restaurant, a cafe and a gift shop, the restaurant serves traditional English Sunday roast and the atmosphere there is really nice with the pink and purple colors of the place and the glass dome on the top that lets the sun rays through, beautiful! I'm a big fan of the sun, especially in Europe where they mostly lack it...poor people

Chatsworth is also a place where the "Porsche owners club" has holiday gatherings, we were there, and Porshce cars were all over the place...glamour!

Finishing our trip there and taking loads of pictures (and getting my ankle badly hurt, it still does after two and a half weeks from then, i'm seeing a doctor soon) we went into Nottingham, went around the Nottigham castle, saw Robin Hood statue, which was quite depressing, you think of Robin Hood as a manly tall strong guy, while what you get on that statue is an impression of a middle to low height teen boy with not an air of strength about him

Also saw the oldest pub in England (or what Nottingham people claim to be the oldest pub in England, because St. Albans people say the same about a pub they have there), it's right next to the castle, has a lot of small rooms cut in stone, not bad, but nothing compares to Aberdeen's Seven sins pub, that one is the reconstruction of an old church, and was really capturing! And Scots are more fun too

The day was coming to an end, so we just headed to the train station to make our way back to Gatwick, i enjoyed my weekend there...really did