Monday, 20 April 2009

Easter eggs and birthday cakes

This post is a little overdue, but better late than never! Had an eggcellent Easter day (sorry about the egg yokes...hahaha), which also happened to be Mummy's birthday. So not only were we bursting at the seams from our choccy eggs, but we were full of birthday brunch and birthday cake as well! Took a little trip to So'ton to see a big cruise ship go by and finished off the day with hot cross buns and yet more chocolate. Easter's such a wonderful time!

Have been back in Sweden a whole week now, and started another svenska course at Folkuniversitetet last Tuesday. It's very satisfying to be putting my brain to work again, I think it went a bit soft when I was trying to teach myself :). Such an improvement on SFI (the free one), but a tad more expensive. Let's hope it pays off.

I know all you smug people back in England are currently basking in glorious 18 degree sunshine, but it has actually been really lovely here too. Yes, it's still a humble 6 degrees, but it's getting warmer goddamit! Maybe one day soon I can go outside without a scarf and gloves..... :O!

Joey and Nick cleared the table of all the eggs, save the candle ;)

Friday, 10 April 2009

Good Friday - the end of a very Good Week

At £19.20 it isn't cheap to take the one hour train ride from Winch to London these days, so it was only cost effective to cram as much as possible into the 2 full days I had planned to be in the capital. Cost effective, but damn tiring! Thursday was an especially busy day, on which I had arranged to have lunch with Katherine and a mooch around the shops, meet Nav for coffee, go to the Old Vic with Mummy and Joey at 7pm, then finish up with a drink with Lil and Steve...phew! Being out of the country makes meeting up with people a little tricky, so it was fantastic to see so many old chums all in one go. Many I hadn't seen for a year and a half, but you know you have great friendships when you spend hours laughing like old times.

The play, 'Dancing at Lughnasa', was a spontaneous choice, but I've never actually been inside the Old Vic theatre before and was eager to see the place I *might have* ended up had the Barbican not got there first. The traditional proscenuim arch was there in all its gold-leafed glory, but the space had been transformed into the round for this production and I wasn't convinced it worked that well as the actors seemed so cramped. The acting itself was top quality, with Hugh's buddy Niamh Cusack in one of the main roles, and Andrea Corr (yes! from The Corrs!!!) making her theatrical debut. It was an Irish play so Andrea fitted in quite well, and I got to thinking about my own upcoming trip to Dublin in three weeks! More to come on that, in due course.

Meanwhile, Happy Good Friday! I hope you have all devoured many many hot cross buns. Hmm...I wonder if they have hot cross buns in Sweden?!

Check out Andrea Corr on the far left spinning really fast!

Tuesday, 7 April 2009

Credit Munch!

There are a few advantages when the country is plunged into recession, and I've been making the most of the 'credit crunch' in the crunchiest way possible: eating out! As most restaurants have convinced themselves that their previous customers are now all hermits living off snails and dead birds from the garden, many well known high-street eateries are making meal-deals left, right and centre to entice us. It's worked! In 10 days I have eaten out no fewer than 5 times - and that's not saying anything against home-cooked food I promise!

If you too would like to take advantage of this little perk in otherwise dire, hopeless, penniless times (oh woe!) then go to where you can print off as many yummy deals as you wish! I have to say, there's much to be said for the English restaurant chains. Although they may appear in every town and city in a generic, samey manner, you can always count on them for good quality food at decent prices. Something that is sadly missed in Stockholm, where you can get a bloody good meal prepared in top class fashion...but at ten times the price! C'mon Sweden...just a few Pizza Expresses wouldn't hurt, surely!?

Sunday, 5 April 2009

Catching Up

Six months - almost exactly - since I left these shores for a Scandinavian adventure. It doesn't feel that long, probably because I've been living so hectically! Now I'm at home for the longest period since moving away (2 weeks!), and I can't help but indulge in a little reflection. Partly, it feels like I lead two lives. It is still a little weird coming home and reverting to my old 'home' self, and I think I shall always act the mental age of 12 while I'm here! But then to go back to Sweden and continue this other bizarre lifestyle feels very surreal as well. There are many things I miss about England, needless to say the language(!), but my life in Stockholm is proving really enjoyable, and it's such a magnetic place that I'm glad I took a chance in going there.

Anywho, since coming back for Easter I have had the pleasure of doing some much needed catching up! First of all with the family, and my positive vibes are going out to G1 (Gpa, Grumpy) for a speedy recovery. Kim, Ems and Rachel Scoinerson have all provided much hilarity in the last few days, and an overnight trip to Guildford to see Scoin led to hours of reminiscing and manic laughter over many, many old photos!

This week I'll be meeting a few other Warwick folk and hopefully some more of the Spoons, before an Easter birthday for Mawmy on Sunday. Fingers crossed for the continued warmth and sunshine! It's a happy change from snow, snow, sleet, drizzle and more snow :).

NB - if you receive an email alert informing you of another thrilling addition to my blog, you can't always view the videos in the email. Shock horror! what a treat you've all been missing! In order to view these gems you should visit the actual webpage Then you get the full whack. Enjoy!

Saturday, 4 April 2009

A Little Bit of Culture

Back in the land of tea and biscuits, where I can understand the language, my generous mother last night took me to the theatre! It's been too long, so we did it the 'proper' way and went to the National. 'Burnt by the Sun' was excellent, with Ciaran Hinds in the lead role. Even if my knowledge of Stalinist Russsia isn't up to scratch, it was enjoyable to join the London theatre melee once again!