Thursday, 21 June 2012

Royal Ascot 2012

A few of the women at my internship office had the opportunity to attend Royal Ascot 2012. Although I'm not 100% clear on what exactly it is, I've gathered that it's somewhat similar to the Kentucky Derby -- horse racing, hats, and champagne all day. After seeing pictures and taking to some of the girls, I've assembled some of my favorite weird and wonderful fashions that emerged from the event.

Jackie St Claire | Royal Ascot | Berkshire | Pictures | Photos | New | Celebrity News
Racegoer | Royal Ascot | Berkshire | Pictures | Photos | New | Celebrity News
    Racegoer | Royal Ascot | Berkshire | Pictures | Photos | New | Celebrity News
Racegoer | Royal Ascot | Berkshire | Pictures | Photos | New | Celebrity News

Racegoer | Royal Ascot | Berkshire | Pictures | Photos | New | Celebrity News
Racegoer | Royal Ascot | Berkshire | Pictures | Photos | New | Celebrity News

This past weekend was filled with markets, shopping, museums, exploring, interesting food, and good weather. After feeling sick and out of sorts quite a bit over here, I was so glad to be able to take some time to myself and participate in activities that made me feel stimulated and rejuvenated.

With nearly a week left of my trip, I've been keeping busy attempting to balance school, work, going out, and seeing all of London before I have to return home. I definitely never want to leave but I'm also a tiny bit excited to get back to my best friend, my mom's hugs, my cloud bed, real coffee, 24 hour diners, beautiful weather, and Davis Park. In an ideal world, I would go home for a week, grab a suitcase of new clothes, get my life in order, and return back with all of those things.

I am also massively excited to get home and move into my new apartment in Williamsburg, Brooklyn! After spending my life's savings at Portabello, Brick Lane, and Spitalfields markets on Sunday, I have assured that I will have plenty of cute little things to fill the apartment with. It's gonna be great to go back to the city with a handful of new good friends. I came on this trip with 27 strangers and am leaving with memories that will last a lifetime, and a bunch of new mates.


Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Missing Andy.

Friday night after watching the France V. England football match at a local pub, I trekked to Camden with Dana, Sarah, & Karen -- experienced my first snakebite (1/2 beer, 1/2 cider, & blackcurrant) & accidentally ran into a concert.

These bitches make me look like a giant.

Sunday, 17 June 2012

Recently the weather in London has been really dismal, and consequently so have I. Being sick for the SECOND time over here has got me a bit upset and defeated. I don't want to waste another second of my time feeling horrible and being bound to my bed. Hopefully with my return back to work, and the sun beginning to peak it's head out a bit, this whole slump I've been experiencing will turn around.
Despite the slight mishap of absolutely horrible weather we've been having and the fact that I've been ill, my time spent here has still proven to be wonderfu, thus far. I've met so many amazing people and expierenced so many amazing things. It's absolutely insane to think that the journey is well over halfway done. I don't really know what I'll do when I have to return to normalcy and real life.....?

Thursday, 14 June 2012

God Save The Queen.

When I initially realized I was going to be away for the bank holiday and the Queen's Diamond Jubilee, I was sooo upset with myself. The whole city of London went nuts in order to celebrate the Queen's 60 years on the throne.... and I was in Paris. Although I missed most of the festivities, I did get to experience the hype and the excitement in the air, and I even made it back in time to go to Hyde Park where there was fireworks and a concert being thrown in the Queen's honor. It really is incredible to see how proud everyone is of her. Here in England, rather than politics being highly controversial and cutthroat.... it seems that people enjoy joining in conversation to share their pleasures and high regards of Queen Elizabeth II.

I would like to personally thank this advertisement for making me crave tacos at 8am every morning on the tube.

Always running into Romano


Hyde Park at sunset. Dancing & listening to Brit superstars preform.

Fireworks in Hyde Park.

Princess Dana

Divorced, Beheaded, Died; Divorced, Beheaded, Survived

Last Tuesday the entire group of 30 of us took a trip to Hampton Court Palace. Although I was certainly not happy to be awake at absurd hours of the morning, having just arrived back from beautiful Paris, it actually ended up being a really enjoyable and interesting trip. Besides the fact that the Palace was gorgeous and you could wander the 60 acres of formal garden (the park covers 750 acres, in total) for days, I actually loved learning about the history of the estate. This, in itself, was enough to make me change my mind about the trip -- I normally hate history.

Specifically, Henry VIII and his life within the Palace was what interested me. Maybe even more specifically, Henry VIII and his wives within the Palace. King Henry VIII, Tudor monarch, ruler
of England in sixteenth-century Renaissance England, had six wives. The fates of the wives can be easily recognized as "divorced, beheaded, died; divorced, beheaded, survived." Besides his marriages, Henry VIII is known for his role in the separation in the Church of England from the Roman Catholic Church. He seemed like a badass and a bit of lustful, harsh, sly, and intelligent King -- Someone I would've liked to know.

Other than the intriguing intellectual history of Hampton Court Palace, the physical history is equally as alluring. The architecture here in England is so profound, to me. It really makes me realize just how young my own country is. It's beautiful. And the landscape and gardens... absolutely incredible. I took a horse-driven tour around the central garden area, got lost in the hedge maze, and sat and marvelled in the royal tranquillity for a while.

Friday, 8 June 2012

"Traveling forces you to trust strangers and to lose sight of all that familiar comfort of home and friends. You are constantly off balance. Nothing is yours except the essential things – air, sleep, dreams, the sea, the sky – all things tending towards the eternal or what we imagine of it."
-Cesare Pavese

and lately I've been thinking about the molecules I've been breathing
and now my skin's so soft it breaks with every breathe I'm taking
and now my blood is full of airplanes & they're flying me away
from all these god damn dirt bag neighborhoods,
saying don't look back, don't you dare look back at me

A Postcard From Paris.

I boarded the métro once arriving in Paris. I didn't quite know where I was going, but roaming the thick-aired and cobblestone-coated city at night made me feel so alive and astir. I must confess feeling a bit guilty... The journey, in essence, was taken with four other girls, but mainly I was alone. I was lost in my thoughts and my experience and in the act of inhaling every inch of the bizarre and unfamiliar place that is Paris, France.

I think the only way I can accurately describe the short trip is magical. Champagne, macaroons, new friends, new adventures, yelling, laughing, tequila shots, sunburn, a sparkling Eiffel Tower, midnight rain, hidden alleys. It was truly incredible and an experience that I will carry with me forever.

It's hard to miss the way Paris lights up a soul and steals the air; feel it lock onto every breath I take & swallow me in it's wonder. I feel like falling and falling and falling forever. It seemed that a few times within the 3.5 days, that the city would've liked nothing more than to posses my breath, completely. It was as if Paris was a thief, a bandit... attempting to pilfer my soul and devour my entity until I no longer know where I've been or who I've been. There is only the here and the now. There is only the steps I anticipate taking forward, in an uncomfortable pair of shoes, on streets that are so estranged. I'm confident in saying that I fell in love, a bit. I don't really blame myself.... I don't see how you could visit that place and not experience a love affair of some sort. If not with the city itself, than with the food or the wine or perhaps a scruffy French boy, dressed to kill, who speaks words in foreign tongues. 
C’est la fin, mon merveilleaux ami. This is the end, beautiful friend.

Croissant d'amandes chocolat and espresso to start the day.

Alex and I took a nap on top of a hill overlooking all of Paris at Basilique du Sacré-Cœur de Montmartre. Sleepy girls.

Champagne, fruit, and baguette picnic at Parc du Champ de Mars -- the park between the Eiffel Tower and the École

View from Pont Alexandre III bridge over the Seine river. Absolutely incredible. I could've stayed there all day.

Jess, Camille, Ericka, and I <3
The last supper. Amazing food, delicious French wine, and good friends.

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

"It felt like I could finally exhale after holding my breath for years. I had done it; I was here."

 Basilique du Sacré-Cœur de Montmartre

Le trajet en train à Paris.

The train ride to Paris was nothing that I'd expected it'd be. Yes, it was faster and it looked a bit different. It didn't feel very different, though. Part of me thinks I could've closed my eyes and half-convinced myself I was on the LIRR heading home; heading back to those soul-sucking suburban streets that I'd fallen in love on so many times.

The ride was mainly uneventful. I had a window seat but the sights were unexciting, to say the least. It had air conditioning which was nice (unlike that fucking British tube system). I cried a little bit, too. I was listening to John Mayer and drinking coffee with too much milk in it, so I figured if ever there was a time or reason to cry, this was it. Also, I was thinking about things... people... that I didn't want to think about; so if the woman sitting next to me eating rancid smelling chicken wasn't annoying enough... this really annoyed me.

I was on my way to France, though, so I guess it makes a little bit of sense... kinda. France - the place you'd gone on that one vacation and I'd missed you so much. You said you missed me too. That was all so juvenile, anyway.

We used to talk about the concept of time. It still racks my brain if I think about it long enough. "Time controls everything," you'd say. Well 2 hours time is all it took. It really is a bit crazy... 2 hours to travel from England to France. From one country to another. Crazy. I guess London really is the center of it all - an outlet to the world. You can get just about anywhere, fairly easily, from London. It proves a portal to all the places I've been, all the places I'm going, all the places I've ever yearned to be.



For people who dream of travelling -- people who have an indisputable impulse to explore, to learn, and to experience new culture, language, and space, there is nothing more rewarding than finally making it to your desired destination.

Well I have finally made it and it's almost a bit surreal. I'm living in London for a month of my life and even a week into this strange endeavour, it still doesn't feel tangible. It's like that something that you've wanted for so long, that something that has always seemed so far out of arms reach; and when you finally obtain it... it's a haze, a daze.... a foggy dream in this foggy place, leaving my mind twisted and my thoughts obscured.

It's a weird realization and an uncomfortable discovery to conjure up that it is not this place that is foreign, but me who is the foreigner. Being so far away from home makes you appreciate normalcy and routine. But I feel so blessed, I really do. To be able to breath new air and experience everyday life things as if they're happening for the first time; that's a real gift. I'm so lucky.

I feel I am beginning to emerge from the glass bottle of myself. I am flying like a freed bird, away from my personality, my brutality, my bitterness, cynical tendencies, and my impatience. They say that New Yorkers are the most jaded people in the world, and I think I can certainly say first hand that that generilaztion is one that deems highly accurate. I love New York, I idolize it... but I believe a long vacation away from that concrete mess is exactly what I need. My edges, I feel, are begin to smooth.

So this is it. This is the documentation of everything that's going on in my strange life in foggy London town for the next four weeks. Cheers!