Saturday, 27 August 2011

Finding your way back

Sometimes this place can feel so isolating. Friends move on with their lives, experience things you can't be there for - both good and bad. Other friends gradually forget to make the extra effort needed to keep in touch. We're all guilty of doing that at some point or another. The time difference is a bit of a killer, too.

It's strange to think I won't see my family for another four months, and it's been a tricky week in general. My mood has not been at its sunniest. And then I got home from a highly unsuccessful night out, opened the post-box and found one of the most thoughtful letters and presents ever.

In case you can't make it out from the dodgy photo, it's a compass pendant, strung on a bracelet. It's a gift from my friend J. And it's a reminder, one that I very much needed, that the people I care about are my home, and I can be close to most of them pretty much anywhere in the world, if I try hard enough.*

I'm so lucky to have a group of friends like the ones I made at school. Sometimes I forget how lucky. And I would never have had the confidence to bugger off to the other side of the world without the knowledge that they'll still be there for me when I get back, even if by that point half of them will be married ladies with proper grown-up lives...

* Sorry, this sounds like the kind of thing you'd find in an American greetings card. I thought about re-writing it. But it's true, and this is my blog. So there.

Thursday, 25 August 2011

Central coast

Time to upload a few more photos from my August adventures, methinks. I managed to get away for a couple of days while my parents were here - we based ourselves in San Luis Obispo and ventured out for a bit of exploring and some wine tasting. It was so nice to get out of the city for a while.

Big sky


We managed to squeeze a lot of things in - the SLO weekly food market, a little jaunt along the Big Sur, a trip to Hearst Castle and some seriously cool elephant seals.



Amaaazing rib stall
It was awesome to see a bit more of California, and to get a chance to hang out with my parents. And it looks like September is set to bring a smattering of international travel, so no chance to sink back into my settled (read lazy) ways just yet...

Wednesday, 24 August 2011


My apartment is my own again after nearly a month of visitors. Mixed feelings ensue.

One of those feelings is definitely smugness that the temperature at LAX at 5.45 this morning was the same as the temperature in London at 1.45 in the afternoon...

Summer weather here is freaking awesome.

Feet. Pool. Cheapo nail varnish.

On the roof


It's also made me think a lot about what they're going back to, and how far away I am from most of the people I care about. I think it's going to take a little while to readjust.

Monday, 22 August 2011


Went to see the Tim Burton exhibition at LACMA today.

Amazeballs, as my current batch of guests would say. The man is a genius, with a very, very strange mind.

That is all.

Sunday, 14 August 2011


I did manage to take the 'rents around a fair bit of LA, while working like a crazy person. Including Venice. Fun stuff.


FYI: Pointing man is irate because a seagull tried to eat his picnic. Fact.


Feet. And legs.

There is more. I think I've taken about 200 photos in the past 10 days. But this'll have to be enough for starters, because I have around 29 hours of blessed peace before my next batch of visitors arrive. Which means:

 - A Sunday night of uninterrupted HBO time
 - Muchos laundry (ugh)
 - Muchos laziness (yeay)
 - A massive lie-in tomorrow morning (double-yeay)

Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Bad day

Not a 'something really terrible happened' day. Or a 'my self-confidence has really been shaken' day. Or even an 'every possible thing has gone wrong' kind of day.

Just one of those days when the little things irritate you in a way they really shouldn't. Drivers cutting you up, people in supermarkets stealing your trolley, clumsy people stepping really hard on your toe, pedestrians walking in front of moving traffic. When I thought said supermarket had run out of diet coke, my thought process ran thus:

"I hate this stupid, crappy day, I want it to be over already. Stupid, dumbass Fresh and Easy, how could they possibly be out of diet coke? Don't they know my toe is hurting? And it's really, really hot? And that my caffeine addiction is getting worse by the day? I HATE this supermarket... I HATE LA... I hate my life... Oooh, actually they do have diet coke hidden at the back of the shelf, yay! Mmmm, wonder if they've got any of those red velvet cupcakes left?"

Never let it be said that I am ever anything but the most reasonable, logical and tolerant of people.

The solution? The original version of Sea of Love. It came on the radio just as a family (of idiots) walked in front of my car in the supermarket carpark, and the dad kindly told his daughter that if she was going to be run over, it should be by a less rubbish car.

In restrained fashion, I resisted reversing and driving over his feet, and me and the soothing sounds of Sea of Love left grocery shopping hell behind.

I might give Fresh and Easy a miss for a while...

Tuesday, 2 August 2011


Yesterday I got to spend some time with my lovely, newly married friends - who kindly let me pick them up from the airport with my somewhat slapdash home-made banner, and crash their honeymoon for an afternoon.

Married lady!

Can everyone whose wedding I have to miss please come on honeymoon to California at my convenience? Thanksverymuch.

Next up - the 'rents, who are currently (I mean at this exact moment) hanging out at Yale, touring Gilmore Girls territory.