Thursday, March 31, 2011

So Long London

Our England vacation is coming to a close... and I can honestly say I I’m happy I’ll never see Will & Kate kitsch again... seriously... it’s EVERYWHERE... and most people don’t even seem to care about the wedding... but i guess the day off is a welcome bonus... this seems to be on every street corner...

This morning we went to the British Museum for a few hours... you really need an entire day to see it all... but two hours was enough for me... especially after I met this green faced man who wouldn’t stop staring at me... I almost threw down... but I remained calm and walked away... next time I won’t be so nice and I’ll beat his green face to a pulp...

Then we saw some mummified peeps... it’s rude to take photos of the dead... but when in London it’s alright according to Ashley... for a second I thought Kate Moss was in the room... so many flashes... and take note kids... flashes and glass cases don’t mix... so here’s some feet... and as a side note... I don’t want to end up at the British Museum in 1000 years... (side note from Ashley: I DO!)

Highgate Cemetery was next... I was looking forward to this all week... in order to see the west cemetery which is the old part you have to book in advance... and the people who give the tours do it on a voluntary basis... the man who took us through was wonderful and had such a passion for the history of London and Highgate...

This was my favourite headstone... a british bare fisted boxer named Thomas Sayers... when he died at the age of 35 over 10,000 people attended his funeral... that’s his beloved dog Lion who still watches over him from the top of his grave...

We also stopped on the east side... where Karl Marx is...

Ashley wanted to stand beside it so you could see it’s sheer size...

And what’s a trip to Highgate if you don’t stop in on Douglas Adams for a visit... possibly the funniest man to come out of Britain... R.I.P. Douglas and don’t forget your towel when you travel...

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Sitting in the tea room, eating wasabi peanuts, wearing sweat pants.

 Friends, we have been doing so much awesome stuff it's hard to fit it all onto the blog. And also annoying. My computer has been having mucho trouble connecting to wireless over here. Constant freezing. Constant internet crashing. As I type this, I am sitting in the luxurious tea room at the Sheraton Park Lane while, you guessed it, eating wasabi peanuts and wearing sweat pants in an attempt to get a decent internet signal. Don't worry mum, I threw a blazer over my tshirt so I still look like total class from the table up. 

Ok. So where did we leave off? Probably with me detailing one meal or another.
Which brings me our delightful time at Mildred's; a great veggie restaurant near soho. 
Fun fact, Brock and I were both here in 2008 (before we met) about a week apart.
Cute, non?
Brock had the ale pie and I had the burrito.  

Afterwards we stopped off at Hamley's which is still so much fun. I remember my mum taking my brother and I there and she explaining, probably to Justin, that it was the biggest toy store and had five whole floors of toys. 
And I totally thought she was doing that adult exaggeration thing to make it sound more appealing to me. Mum and Dad - I admit it; you've never lied to me.
Can you tell I miss Tonka?

Um... I really wanted every single Harry Potter replica wand. 
I just kept saying, "but 24 pounds really isn't that much."
and then hearing Brock tell me that replica or otherwise, wands don't do anything. 

Last night we were in Camden for a show at the Koko. Brock had told me before hand that it was like a nice version of the Opera House in Toronto. It was way nicer. And I actually used the bathroom at the Koko so that says a lot.

We were going to see Patrick Wolf. Rowdy Superstar opened for him and it was a riot. I don't know if that's a compliment or not.... RS was such a spectacle; I really enjoyed it.

Patrick Wolf on the other hand was unbelievable. I wasn't super familiar with his music before but having listened to some through Brock I wasn't expecting such an elegant performance. It was so amazing as he described meeting the love of his life at the same venue three years earlier. I know, I know. I'm a puss puss. Hush.

Oh yeah. Then I drank too much.

After the show I demanded that Brock take me to get noodles. Meaning some cheap nasty take out noodles that I could eat in an alley and feel quiet shame by myself. 

Instead, Brock takes me to a restaurant because he wants to get a beer. And instead of sitting across from me, he sits beside me on the back bench so the ENTIRE restaurant (which is tiny and full of sober people) is facing us. So much for quiet shame. Me and my 10 closest London friends got to watch me shovel noodles into my mouth with chop sticks.

The highlight was definitely being handed a menu and immediately handing it back and saying,
"I just want noodles. Vegetarian and lots of them."

This morning after sleeping off a slight hang over we headed to Harrods and I immediately hit the food hall. Both Brock and I were amazed and impressed with the customer service at Harrods. No one misses a beat in offering the Harrods card, assisting with directions and letting hobo's like myself try on many miu miu bags and chanel sunglasses with obviously no possibility of a purchase. Thanks guys! If I ever find thousands of dollars in the gutter I'll be sure to throw them your way.

And I tried a macaroon for the first time.
The verdict?

Later on we headed to Portobello Road but we missed a lot of the market. We still really enjoyed the antique shops. I picked up a brass fox door knocker for our future home. 

Then, you know, we went to another pub. It was an obvious local with 2 hilarious older men talking dating with the bar maid who was younger than me. So entertaining. 

The pub also had these really need little rooms all around the bar with doorways shorter than 5ft and beautiful dark wood and sand blasted windows separating them. Very pretty.

I found one of these stacking dolls for Brock's nephew. I used to have one as a little girl. It's a pretty cool toy. I hope he likes it. I also picked up a cute little Harrods bib and a dress for Courtney's new little girl. I'm so excited to have a little girl in my life to buy cute stuff for! Sorry Bryson; stuff for little girls is just way cuter than stuff for little boys.

Sad Brock?

Oh no. Just tired from all the record shopping.

Don't worry. Beer and veggie burgers make him good as new.

I think that's it for now. I'm gonna jet off to the room to jump on the bed and watch more awesome British telly. No joke - I love British television. CBC, take note. This is how it's done.

Two more sleeps and I'm home. Miss me?

Monday, March 28, 2011

Tea Time in London!!!

So we're in London... trying to get the internet to work in Starbucks... which had it's windows smashed in the day before we came... because they have crappy internet no doubt... and we've ditched the giant car... they upgraded us... which sounds great... until you realize how much gas is in the UK... 80 pounds to fill the tank... in total we pumped 100 pounds in to the gutless beast... to give you the idea of our soccer mom mobile Ashley has posed with it below...
After we arrived in London and we checked into our glorious hotel... thanks to Ashley's Mum... I hit up Rough Trade and after we finally had good curry at Aladin on Brick Lane... check that... amazing curry...

Today was started with Pret A Manger... possible the best thing the english have ever invented... okay maybe universal healthcare...
Afterward we were off to the Museum of Natural History and learned about everything Darwin... including my close relation to monkeys...

Ashley liked the hippos...
And I bought a dinosaur hand puppet to amuse Bryson... and maybe myself...
And why come to Britain without stopping at a cheese shop... which is now fermenting just outside our window...
And Ashley had to buy a turban and I hit yet another record store... where I found a original... not re-released mind you... Donovan Universal Soldier 45... off to the pub... I forget what number we're on... and how many cordies I've seen.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Grandma Day

I'm not really sure how much of our viewing audience consists of boyfriends of one kind or another... but I thought I would use this post as an opportunity to give said boyfriends some advice. 

Advice on how to be the best boyfriend. 

1. Gather all grandma's belonging to your girlfriend.
2. Take them out for the day.

Easy right?
Best boyfriend ever. 
See below.

Weymouth Unicorns.

Crazy lady tanning on the beach.
On a reflective mat.
While wearing Uggs. 
No big deal.

Brock and the G2

I tried to find Brock a shirt just like this.
No such luck.

He asked me to take this picture. 
I swear it.

Ashley and the Grandmas!!!!
It's a new band we're working on. This is our promo shot.
It's going to sound really new age with a touch of country and a nod to classical influenced by Polish Polka done low fi.

That's all I've got in me for tonight as I'm trying to stream last weeks Jersey Shore. 
You can take the girl outta Scarborough....

Brock will update soon on pubs 11 and 12 and the terrible tribal phenomenon that is sweeping England's South coast.


Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Sleeping in the Attic

Hi Friends.

Ok! We are in Poole. Or Poolie as B calls it. He's clever like that. 

We are staying at my Nan's (mum's mum) this week, sleeping in separate beds (a theme for this trip?) all the way up in the attic. And I must be honest; I was willing to sleep on separate floors as long as I still got 'my' room in the attic. 

Today was mega adventure day as we drove up to Bath to check out the hot springs the Romans left for us. We were trying to figure out what would be a good day trip and were initially going to see Stonehenge but after finding out that you can't touch the giant rocks even a little bit (does anyone else have the sneaking suspicion that you can probably knock them over but no one knows that because they haven't tried in ages? Just sayin' I'm really strong) we decided on Bath.

Oh. And may I just add that once again, England has revealed its love for me as we have been graced with only beautiful weather. Just like every other time I'm here. Based on my experiences, it only rains in Wales.

In another life (the one where I roll in money in my free time) I would go back and visit one of Bath's lush spas. They seem superb. But today, we settled for the school child visit. Quite literally. I was asked if I was leading a school group when I went in and it was my look of disgust that settled that question. Throughout the Roman Bath Museum we were dodging and avoiding the school groups but there were too many. All carrying clipboards they kept yelling at their teacher, 
"Is this going to be on the test?!" 
"Is this one of the answers over here?!" 
Please oh please, let me have one million children. 

The Roman Baths were a lot of fun. They gave us (free) audio guides. And it's important I mention they were free because normally I'm too cool for school (ok, poor) to shell out for that fancery. But they were actually really good. Enlightening and what not.

After the museum we found a pub quick fast where Brock proudly declared it his ninth of the trip. For some reason we missed going to even one yesterday but I'm sure he'll make up for it tomorrow and somehow find time to visit at least three.

Brock and I gave the British Veggie Burger another go and this time it was a success. And by success I mean, bits of chopped up veggies, held together by cheese and deep fried. Yes please. Who says being veggie has to be healthier anyways?

Oh yeah. I had nacho's to start. 

After a nice walk through the park we headed back home. And I'll add at this point that I am a superb driver who can easily and masterfully navigate the narrow and windy streets of Bath. So take that.