Pictures: Avebury Autumn Equinox 2023 Friday 22nd - Saturday 23rd September 2023 Another overnight stay in the Avebury area for the Autumn Equinox. A particularly moving sunrise this year. London September 2023 September 2023 Pictures from London in September 2023 including Erika’s birthday.
Aix and Monaco September 2023 Thursday 31st August - Tuesday 5th September 2023 Five nights away in the South of France and Monaco, resuming our old annual tradition of visiting the Cote d’Azur just before Erika’s birthday.
Quantock Hills Wednesday 23rd and Thursday 24th August 2023 A one night stay in the beautiful Quantock Hills. Suffolk August 2023 Wednesday 16th - Friday 18th August 2023 A short midweek trip to Suffolk on a bit of a whim. Taking in Ufford, Orford, Bury St Edmunds and Grantchester on the way back. Tried our hand at “glamping” one night, and stayed the other night in a golf resort, oddly enough.
[Friday 24th November 2023]
We took the car for its MOT in the daytime, and while we were waiting availed ourselves of the nearby shops and eateries. Later on I went for Black Dog Hill on the heath at sunset.
[Friday 17th November 2023]
Went to the Sainsbury's in Finchley Road in the morning to pick up a Click and Collect order (not entirely successfully). Then in the evening went to my friend Jeremy's latest art exhibition.
[Thursday 16th November 2023]
Went down to Belgravia to visit the dentist. As is tradition I went for pizza at Oliveto afterwards, which is temporarily housed in one of the Olivo group's other restaurants owing to a fire earlier this year.
[Saturday 11th November 2023]
I think the girls must have been out all day today - I went to the heath for a bit in the afternoon / early evening, then back at home decided on a whim to have a little fire in the back garden and cook my dinner on it.
[Friday 27th October 2023]
Went for a walk around some of the Ashridge Estate, near Ivinghoe Beacon. I was focusing on taking video so hardly took any photos. Just one or two of mushrooms.
[Monday 23rd October 2023]
Drove from the East Midlands to Hereford, where we'd be staying at Robin's new place for the next two nights. Stopped off for lunch on the way at the Black Swan at Much Dewchurch.
[Sunday 22nd October 2023]
We were hoping to have a nice day with Mum but ended up spending practically the whole of the daytime waiting around in hospitals, which was rather disappointing. Did at least still manage to have a Sunday roast at the end of the day.
[Monday 25th September 2023]
Erika was heading off on a residential school trip today - four night awa from home! In the evening Chie and I went to Diwana on Drummond Street for dinner but I seemed to get a rather severe stomach ache on the way home.
[Friday 22nd September 2023]
Took the train to Swindon then a bus to somewhere near Avebury in plenty of time to have a long walk around the surrounding area, taking in Windmill Hill, West Kennet Avenue, Silbury Hill, Swallowhead Springs and West Kennet Long Barrow before finding a place to make dinner and hunker down for the night.
[Saturday 16th September 2023]
The girls were otherwise engaged in the afternoon, so I took a bottle of English sparkling wine to Primrose Hill, stopping off en route to pick up some vegan fried chicken to have with it.
[Wednesday 13th September 2023]
Got the train down to Haslemere so that I could revisit the wonderful Half Moon Inn in Northchapel and then walk up to Blackcap, the highet point in the South Downs National Park.
[Saturday 9th September 2023]
The day before Erika's birthday. While she was at Japanese school in the morning I went down to Fortnum and Mason to buy her some chocolates. In the afternoon I took Erika and a friend to an "escape room" as part of Erika's extended birthday weekend festivities. After that gelato, then back home for a bit, then later on we went to the big Sainsbury's in Camden to buy things for Erika's party tomorrow.
[Monday 4th September 2023]
I woke ridiculously early and went down to the hotel beach to watch the sunrise. When I got back the girls were still fast asleep so I went out again, for a morning stroll around Monaco, to see if I could find a spot with a nice view of the principality.
Then breakfast at the hotel, after which I dragged the girls out for another walk, to the market, our favourite lunch spot, by way of the Japanese gardens and the casino square.
Back to the hotel after that for more swimming and lounging around on the beach, then dinner ended up being back at the same restaurant as the previous evening.
[Sunday 3rd September 2023]
In the daytime we took the (budget version of) the TGV from Aix to Nice, then on from there to Monaco, arriving at our hotel around 3pm. Spent most of the rest of the afternoon at the hotel's beach / pool. Then later on out for dinner at our old favourite restaurant on the beach, before heading back to the hotel for post-dinner cocktails (also on the beach).
[Saturday 2nd September 2023]
Quite a foody sort of a day in Aix en Provence today. Started with pain au chocolats at a patisserie, then went for a stroll around the market and more snacking.
Later in the afternoon Chie and Erika went for a swim in the pool at our friend's apartment complex, while I did more food shopping for dinner. I cooked my interpretation of Provencal classic "Petits Farcis" and while it was baking we had a quick outing to see the Terrain des Peintres, where Cezanne used to go and paint views of a nearby mountain.
[Friday 1st September 2023]
We spent the daytime at a little cove / beach called Port d'Alon which our friends who live in Aix had discovered. In the evening back to Aix for dinner at a Lebanese restaurant.
[Thursday 31st August 2023]
Travelled by train from London to Aix en Provence today. Eurostar to Paris, then 1st class on the TGV from there to Aix. Arrived in Aix in time for a late al fresco dinner in a lively square in town.
[Wednesday 30th August 2023]
Quite a mixed bag of a day. I spent a bit of time in the afternoon making a video about Covent Garden pubs. Erika joined me for the tail end of that, and then we went for tea and cake in Somerset House. After that, dinner with work friends who were visiting from the US.
[Thursday 24th August 2023]
Woke up in the Quantock Hills, had a simple breakfast on a hilltop watching the sunrise, then walked from there to Watchet where I had a second breakfast. Then got the bus to Taunton, and the train back to London.
[Wednesday 23rd August 2023]
I got the train down to Taunton, for a one night stay in the Quantock Hills. I seemed to hit it at a perfect time of year, with the heather in bloom, and on a day with good weather, and the colours were utterly glorious. A beautiful part of England, I don't know why I had never been before!
[Friday 18th August 2023]
Breakfast and a morning / early afternoon stroll around Bury St Edmunds, then later on stopped off in Grantchester for a late lunch / afternoon tea on the way back to London.
[Thursday 17th August 2023]
Did a round of crazy golf at the golf course hotel in the morning. Then motored on to Orford, where we had lunch and spent some of the afternoon. From there, we then proceded to our glamping site near Bury St Edmunds, where we'd be staying the night in a "pod" in the woods.
[Wednesday 16th August 2023]
Drove to Suffolk, where we had somewhat randomly chosen to stay the first night of our trip in what was essentially a golf hotel, because it had a swimming pool and was close to the part of Suffolk we wanted to visit.