Category Archives: Travel
This weekend Richard and I celebrated our Civil Partnership Anniversary (7 years) and went to Luxembourg.
Richard has been there before on business but neither of us really knew what to expect of it as a holiday destination. As we learnt most people come into Luxembourg to work or to visit en route to somewhere else in Europe (in fact I bumped into a colleague at breakfast in the hotel doing just that with her parents).
It’s a very quiet place but that’s not to say there isn’t anything to do.
We visited the museum of modern art, the Royal Philharmonic, Notre Dame Cathedral (and were lucky enough to enjoy an organ concert), the museum of Luxembourg, we walked around the old city and took in all the sites, including some of the many towers and castles.
Per captia Luxembourg is the third richest country in the world and it shows – people don’t think twice about driving to the shops in their Porches or Aston Martins whilst browsing the shops with the latest Prada handbags and wearing the latest Gucci winter coats dripping in jewels from Cartier. This was quiet self-evident in the cost to visit as Luxembourg either has expensive places or cheap places – there is no middle ground.
We had some lovely meals and the cuisine is as mixed as the culture of Luxembourg. Most people speak French and English (as well as Luxemborgoise) but Richard and I managed to uphold the Englishman abroad stereotype and made sure when we were tired that we would answer in Spanish! It made a few people smile and it helped break the ice but it was a bit embarrassing.
I managed to get a really heavy cold whilst flying out on Friday so wasn’t on top form so on Sunday morning we spent as long as we could in the hotel before checking out and then browsing the Museum of Luxembourg.
This didn’t stop Richard and I enjoying our time and celebrating our anniversary. We purposely didn’t plan anything and took our time, taking in the sights and simply enjoying one anothers company.
It really is a lovely country, the people are friendly, I have never ever witnessed anywhere like it before, it’s so quiet and tranquil but you get the feeling lots of hard money deals are going on behind closed doors. The architecture is a mixture of German, Danish, Dutch, French and English and the modern architecture would rival that of Seville.
I took a few snaps whilst we were there, as did Richard and most are from our iPhones as we decided to travel light. This is a selection of my favourite photos and there is a set on Flickr you can browse through.
I would highly recommend Luxembourg if you wanted to get away for a couple of days It’s only an hours flight from London and theres nothing quite like it.
Tired but happy as we have a long weekend in Luxembourg to look forward to
Published via Pressgram
I forgot I recorded some of these… Makes for a nice reminder of our time in Vancouver, Vancouver Island and Tofino 😉
I miss Canada.
Just when I thought I had this sleep pattern/jet lag thing sorted, last night goes and proves me wrong.
We both stayed up late (for us) and I had a cycle lesson this morning so thought that a decent night and a structured morning would get me finally back into the swing of things.
I didn’t sleep that we’ll at all and when I did nod off it was around 2:30 this morning. The alarm woke me at 7:30 as planned bit all was not well. As I just got off I was really disoriented, I didn’t know where I was (thinking I was in one of the hotels in Vancouver 😔 ) then went to get up and felt really dizzy.
I persevered and made my way to the bathroom but managed to clean my teeth and had to sit down as my head was spinning and I couldn’t focus.
I was angry and annoyed that this was the case and worried about the cycle lesson as I could barely stand let alone get on the bike in traffic!
I decided there and then to cancel the cycle lesson and head back to bed which is exactly what I did.
Richard got up around 8 (I think) and he was up around 3 again.
He let me sleep in and I thought when he came in to shower that it was about 9:30. Wrong! I woke up at 12:30!
We’ll there goes most of Saturday! I can only hope that this means my sleep pattern gets back to normal ASAP.
At least getting up this late means I should be awake and alert to enjoy tonight’s Eliane Elias concert!
Well the title says it all. It has taken a while to get back into the swing of things and I felt up to a run this morning.
I started my tapering early for the Royal Parks Half Marathon (next weekend!) and continue with this as there is no point in pushing myself too much.
It feels good to be running on my old stomping ground again but to be honest I would even swap the country lanes of England to run around Stanley park at dawn every day
I was starting to worry about whether I am up to the task of running the Half Marathon next weekend but I know that I managed 7K in Canada without worrying about it and much the same today. I only did 5K but to be honest with the jet lag I think this is sensible as my headache was a bit painful when I finished running.
I reminded myself it’s all about my mental state, I am sure my body is more than up to the task with all the training I have put in over the summer. I also remind myself how happy I was to complete 10 miles and that today’s 5K was a challenge for me a little over a year ago so I have nothing to worry about.
It has come to my attention though that the UK is much cooler than when we left a couple of weeks ago and I can start to feel the cold air filling my lungs on the run. I have to get used to the before the race as it starts at 9 am so it won’t be a particularly warm start to the day.
I am pleased with todays run and feel ok considering. I was worried as my knees were really sore on the plane as I could not get comfy – and it’s a fairly long flight.
I wanted to run more in Canada but the circumstances didn’t allow for it. It took Richard and I a while to get used to the time difference and it was the final full day in Vancouver when I felt alert enough to get out and hit the streets.
I chose not to run in Tofino as it’s very rural, lots of winding roads, lots of lake and precarious sea-side paths, not to mention the presence of Cougars, Wolves and Bears to watch out for.
Richard and I walked for miles whilst we were away and although we didn’t cycle in the end (I wanted to enjoy the views and not worry about focussing too hard on cycling) we did get around. On one day we walked to Davie Street, back to Canada Place and along the harbour before reaching Stanley Park to walk the entire perimeter along the Pacific Coast (9k) – in total I worked out we walked about 21k that day. With all the other stops, look outs, hills and trails we completed I am sure I covered more than enough to make up for not running!
I have a few more days off before returning to work so I will put in at least another run before the Half Marathon next weekend. My fundraising is going very well but there is still time to sponsor me if you have not done so already. The British Heart Foundation do such excellent work, anything you can donate will be gratefully appreciated by me and by them. Thank you.
I am however more knowledgeable about the following:
- Canada is a BIG place
- Vancouver Island and the lakes are just as big
- Canadians are friendly (some very cute) and courteous…
- Although they say fuck a lot!
- No matter how far you go you will always encounter someone from home (the barman at the lodge was from Brighton!)
- It takes several hours to walk the perimeter of Stanley Park – but it’s worth it
- Running Stanley Park at sunrise is breath-taking
- Vancouver is expensive
- Vancouver is very clean, open, breathtaking and friendly
- Met Vancouver has a lot of public art
- The seagulls on Granville Island are very pushy
- Vancouver is a city with a dark underbelly
- Tofino is a stunning place and wonderfully laid back
- The beaches are stunning and you get miles and miles to yourself
- The name Long Beach is a bit of an understatement!
- Uclulet really is like living on the edge!
- I could watch float planes take off and land in the harbour forever
- Storms in Vancouver Island are quite an event
- Finding bear prints on the beach can be a little disconcerting
- Every rustle in the woods makes you think you’ve seen a bear, cougar or wolf!
- Coffee in Canada is wonderful
- Tea (surprisingly) in some places in Canada is also wonderful
- Old American women on air planes are rude and obnoxious
- Having a flight delay because they need to fix a small part on the plane isn’t as scary as it sounds
- I absolutely loved every moment of the holiday and did not want to leave
- We are now saving our pennies to return…
We are back in Vancouver following a lovely drive back across Vancouver Island to Nanaimo.
It’s 6 am as I write as we’re getting ready for the long drive back across the Island to Nanaimo.
I love Vancouver but I am going to miss Tofino so much. After all these years I know understand Richards draw to such a wonderful place.
If only one thing stays with me on this trip it will be the memory of holding my babies hand on a secluded beach whilst watching waves crash high and far away against some submerged Island far off on the horizon.