Home Sweet Home
What do tiny succulents, shimmery lotions, and a 70s folk singer have in common? A selection of things I’m loving this month…
Why is there an Egyptian Sphinx on the roof of the Manitoba Legislative Building? Um, and is the Ark of the Covenant right here in Winnipeg?! The Hermetic Code Tour is one tour you definitely don’t want to miss.
I have a lot of memories of London from before I lived here. In one, I’m wearing Spice Girl shoes, you know, those platform trainers that all of us wore in 1997. I had bought them on Oxford Street, at Miss Selfridges, my new favourite store. It was my second time in England; my very first visit, in fact my first visit to another continent, was to London and Windsor for a Christmas holiday with my family only six months before. My sister and I had gone to see Spice World in Convent Garden that holiday, and let me tell you – the Spice Girls were a big deal in London at the time. Anyway, in this memory, I’m on the tube, wearing my Spice Girls shoes, being very thirteen, when I stepped on a woman’s foot.
“Watch it!” she hissed at me, and I remember thinking she was extra scary because she had a British accent.
“I really don’t want to live in London,” I remember thinking. But oh, what a decade or two can change…
This time last year, I could have never predicted where I’d be at this exact moment: sitting on the patio of my family’s rented casa in Nicaragua, a spiced rum and coke beside me, the sun dipping low in the sky before it sinks past the ocean’s horizon and out of sight. I thought that 2013 wasn’t a very big year for me, but it was; it was one of transition, of finally moving to London. 2014 started off slow, with almost no plans – soon it grew into a year of travel, a year of accomplishments, and a year of maturing (both in numbers and in mindset). Here’s a little review of the past year.
Be warned: there are lots of photos!
I’ve been sighing a lot in London lately. I often talk about how much I love this city on this blog; I wrote a whole post about why it deserves every bit of that love, just over a year ago. In that post, I cited the things to do, the galleries, the people, the restaurants, the markets. And I still stand by every word of that post. From Broadway Market to Saatchi Gallery, to afternoon tea and early morning raves, I’m more in love with this city than ever.
But we all know what love is like. It starts off like fireworks, all oohs and aahs, lust and passion. If we’re lucky, that feeling stays for a while. If we’re really lucky, that feeling stays forever.
I am a total packrat, and I shop too much. This is a terrible combination, especially as someone who travels a lot. If you have been following this blog long enough, you may remember a few posts I did on the house I own in Canada (here, here, and here) – I have never been one to hide the fact that I love buying things while I’m abroad. I’m always the one with the backpack that’s too heavy, but hey, I’m really good at haggling now. I’ve never met a market I didn’t love.
The thing is, I don’t really spend that much money on things I buy. I can only think of a handful of items that have ever cost me over $20 Canadian dollars (about £12). And while the little things can certainly add up, I always budget for souvenir shopping. There are so many cheap souvenirs to be had, however…