Friday, December 31, 2010

2010: The Review

Well. What a year ... and I've only written one post, or rather put up one video ... to mark one of the main events of the year.

So what has happened this year?

It's been a busy one. School had a tough year with a lot going on, not all good. We got a new headteacher over the summer, and things seem to be going well now. Still very busy though, but in a different way.

I applied for a couple of jobs and eventually got promoted to Head of Department. I'm enjoying the challenge although with the new arrangements at school I am still finding my feet somewhat!

Unfortunately these challenging times have affected my health so for much of the time I have been under the weather and on a variety of medications.

One of the highlights of the year was going to Hyde Park to see the Pope in September. That was fun, and the pupils quite enjoyed hearing about it too.

But the main events of the year were sad events. During the summer holidays, my Great Auntie and my Grandad died within the same week, and I then had two eulogies to deliver the following weeks, one in England, one in Scotland. Two wonderful, wonderful people who will be missed very much. So 2010 is dedicated to them.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Sunday, November 22, 2009

The Seabass Restaurant

We've had a nice, if cold, afternoon in London again, this time visiting the Anish Kapoor exhibition at the Royal Academy. Very interesting, and some made me physically smile in that I couldn't help myself, but found the corners of my mouth turning up. Particularly the big red wax block going through the five galleries and the giant yellow painting that turns out to have a big bulbous intruberance inside it. If that's a word!

Then we headed back to St Christopher's Place on James Street for H's birthday tea. We went to the Seabass restaurant. His coconut prawns were delicious, I enjoyed my hummus and pitta bread. Then his lamb shish kebab was very tasty, my seabass on roast vegetables was succulent, but the chips were a bit oily and overdone - not as good as mine, so mostly left. Overall, very nice, we enjoyed ourselves.

And now I'm off to bed!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Mimosa's Bar and Grill

It's been a while since I reviewed a restaurant; however, when we saw the prices at Mimosa, I decided that I ought to do a review, whether good or bad. £6.95 is a good price for a starter and main course in London, and I'm glad to say that H was wrong when he assumed that might mean that "all the food will be from packets from Tesco"!

To service was very good. The young waitress was new and, I think, still learning English; she brought us the wrong starter. However, H did not realise until half way through, and when we pointed it out, the manageress brought us the right dish; this meant we got to try three of the starters for the price of two!

I had hummus and fried livers. Delicious, and spot on starter size. The small mound of livers were succulent and just a little pink, resting on a coral reef of hummus. I had watched the waitress carefully brown the pitta bread on a big metal dome on top of the smoky, firey grill earlier - it was crispy, not too much, just right.

H's first starter turned out to be a spinach and soft cheese filo pastry with salad. The pastry was very slightly too oily for my taste, but the spinach and cheese was just right. The salad - which also came later with the main course - was the only time that I thought H might have a point about food coming from a plastic bag in Tesco! Red and green cabbage with carrot and a spot of mustard dressing. Anyway, the filo parcels were not the calamari rings expected, but when they came, they still had the slightly too greasy batter but with tasty squid that was not too chewy or rubbery, the main reasons why I don't really like squid.

We were probably getting full on bread and extra starters before the main course arrived. I had a very tasty vegetable moussaka with more of the salad and some mint yoghurt raita sauce. Lots of tomatoes, peppers, tomatoes, courgettes, aubergines and bechamel sauce! Very tasty and, once again, a good size for lunch. H had lamb sheesh kebab and rice; it's always a good sign when he finishes something quickly!

We finished by ordering "a cup of tea" which, in translation, became "a coffee", but, once again this mistake was quickly rectified. I had earlier had a delicious, and thick, strawberry milkshake.

I would definitely take any friends or family here for lunch if we are ever in the Bond Street area ... although we passed many other good looking cafes, creperies and trattoria in that same area that we'll need to try some time!

I should point out that we ate out having spent a very interesting and enjoyable hour and a half or so at the nearby Wallace Collection. Hope to go back at some point in the future to peruse further the collection. Not too impressed by the Damien Hirst's this time; well, H wasn't anyway, I didn't really have much time to have an opinion before I heard his!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Martin Creed

What would an evening with the man who created the whole world plus the art equals the whole world, and lights switching on and off, in a dance studio in Islington, consist of? Some mathematical ballet, arty videos and repetitive drumming and strumming, along with Creed's distinctive vocals and slightly awkward but endearing gait. A very funny and relaxing evening, full of surprises and amusements, pauses, possible improvisations and planned happenings. In the midst of it, the choreographer called out seemingly spontaneous and random letters - "We'll have L followed by T front to back" - and the dancers rhythmically entered the space, producing ordered and controlled movements that reminded me of square numbers and logorithmic equations. Creed joked throughout the evening ... In one distinctive piece he commented that he had got the timing wrong, in another he stumbled over that he was glad to be there - he thought. Some may ask, as Creed did in his first song, what's the point? But that is, I think the point. A great evening.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Mind Game

I've been watching Derren Brown, which lead to looking at other magical videos, and thought this was interesting ... be ready to pause, and have a pen and paper ready ...

What do you think?

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Day Six

Had a lovely day today - met up with a few old friends from uni and their children. Wonderful to see them again, after such a long time! We went to the play park where I got lots of exercise pushing the roundabout round about, seeing and sawing the seesaw, and pulling the pulley thing back up the rope. The children are delightful, and the eldest told me some wonderful stories about her imaginary friends; angels who are covered in multicoloured flowers which have hearts in the centre of each petal. I was lucky enough to stay all day and to help put them to bed at night as well.

It's been a really hot day, and I've continued sweating back at the flat despite the fan being on. I've managed to sort out some of my shoe collection a bit, have finished dusting in the bedroom, and have put all the clothes away.

Breakfast - banana and blackberry smoothie.

Lunch - spaghetti bolognese followed by fruit salad and ice cream.

Afternoon snack - a Feast ice cream!

Dinner - Omelette with cucumber and cherry tomato salad followed by a slice of toast and some homemade gooseberry jam.

(I also had 2 plums and a bagel with honey for supper last night.)

As of this morning, the scales were back at the 11 stone point, which was a bit disheartening but not too much - after all, it's not been a week yet, and I know my weight can fluctuate at different times. I definitely have lived a healthier life this week, doing lots more active work in and around the house, walking much more than normal, and eating lots of fruit and vegetables. I have not had any chocolate or biscuits, have felt healthy, and think I look healthy. Perhaps my fat is turning into muscle!!

However, tomorrow I shall visit my Auntie ... and who knows what we'll eat when I am there?! I'll try to stick to the healthy options, but I'll not have as much control over my choices, and I am sure there will be many more temptations!

H may come home a bit earlier, which will be lovely. I think he's really enjoyed his Grand Tour, and I'm looking forward to seeing his photographs and hearing his tales!

Right. It's after midnight now (I had to finish tidying up before I leave because I didn't want H coming back to a messy house!) so I think I better get to bed so I can make the most of tomorrow! (I slept in this morning!)