My lovely husband and his niceness again…This time, he took me away to Lovely London where I was spoilt rotten!
I am lucky.
Had the best time ever, we have been to London millions of times. I’m sure we will return, again and again.
We stayed in the Hoxton Hotel, a very, very cool and funky hotel in Shoreditch/Hoxton, a minute from Old street tube station and walkable to all areas of interest. The hotel was full of everything we could ever want-free papers, bag of breakfast hung on your door every morning, ultra quiet, cool decor, pears soap(!), uber friendly staff and a free Look magazine for the girlies! The hotel lobby was always buzzing, full of young business people on their way to work, a little business meeting at 6 a.m.!
Things we did were:
- lots of eating in Jamie Oliver’s new eaterie “Union Jacks” the garlic mushrooms were heavenly. Pizza East, Breakfast Club and Laxiero Tapas Bar in Hoxton were both divine and we ate pizza, tapas and breakfast(!), The real Greek, Covent Garden sold okay Greek food and good old traditional fish and chips. I walked a long way to get these fish and chips. At least ten minutes.
- Shakespeare’s Globe theatre, which is pretty and the tour guide was brilliantly witty but short tour. The shop afterwards has everything you could ever want. How about a mug with blood dripping over it, a la Lady Macbeth? I spent far too much on things with Shakespearean quotes on them!
- Tate Modern which was hugely depressing and frantically arranged. The outside and inside is aesthetically non pleasing. Don’t tell me it adds to the experience. It doens’t. the Tate Modern in Liverpool is fun, colourful and child like and it makes a difference. Also, the Tate Modern, London decided to charge 15 pounds to see Damien Hirst’s newest exhibitions of skulls and sharks and madness. People were actually queueing…We were disappointed.
- The National Gallery was just as a gallery should be. I’ve been before but took a visit to the Carravaggio’s paintings as a friend of mine is obsessed/preoccupied/inspired by him. I like the way this gallery is very doable and laid out well.
- The National portrait Gallery is very cool. From old, mad kings and queens, which Simon had no interest in to Blur, JK Rowling and Tracy Emin being mad and naked. It has it all really. The shop rocks too!
- Hyde Park was bleddy cold but lovely but too big for my little legs so I ended up in Kensington Palace and Gardens. Determined to find the cafe called the Orangie, I got there and rewarded myself to a glass of nice, pink floaty, girly stuff and my newest and most loved Kevin Barry’s short stories “There are little kingdoms”-I’ve only read one of his so this is why it is my most loved!
- Foyle’s Bookshop-is the biggest book shop in London. Love. As well as shakespeare memorabilia, I’ve developed an obsession with notebooks and books and more books. Bought about 6 here, 1 more in duty free and brought 2 with me…Eek.
- Matila on broadway-WEnt to see Tim Michinn’s show on broadway, a life-long fan of Roald Dahl and his Matilda. Sat in front of two lovely twins from US of A. All dressed up in ringlets, ribbons and flowery dress, they told me that they had seen the film “Matilda” but had not heard of the book. Or roald Dahl. Blasphemy. What are they teaching in schools these days? I digress. I am a huge fan of musical theatre and Matilda was excellent. The little girl who played her, we had Kerry was the star of the show along with a brilliantly and subtle camp Ms Trunchbull, played by Bertie Carvell, Paul Kaye playing Mr wormwood, a stand in for Mrs Wormwood was brilliant. And those children, everyone of them were great and non annoying. Children actors in musicals can be over the top but these were so good that we stood and applauded them straight off when it ended. It is well, well, well worth a look. Loads of adult humour there and some stay in your head songs that I’ve been singing over and over!
- Hummingbird Cupcake shop-go visit, go now, in fact go to London only for this! I got the dark double bottom one which sounds rude but it is so not. Dark chunks of choc, light, choc sponge covered with thick, buttery vanilla cream cheese…|An espresso added to the caffeine and general badness of it but you know what, I’d do it again!?!!
- Salt beef deli sandwich in Selfridges-very, very tasty and very, very expensive. the lovely man who worked behind the salty beef counter weighed my beef carefully, gave me a slice( a slice!) of bread, a squirt of mustard and charged me about 9 pounds….Boooo…But, it was pretty delish and Simon wanted it.
- Bertie Carvel (Miss Trunchbull), Paul Kaye (Mr Wormwood), Josie Walker (Mrs Wormwood) and Lauren Ward (Miss Honey) reprise their roles alongside ori