Tuesday, August 25, 2009

London Snapshots

Some happy snaps of our wanderings in the past few days....

Sherlock Holmes tiles in the Baker Street tube station.

Parking: Smart Car style in Notting Hill.

Great antique store in Portobello Road.
Paella at the Portobello Road Markets.

Natural History Museum in Kensington.
Natural History Museum.

Shopping at Selfridges - Louise - don't look ;)

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Rocket - Our Local.

This is our local pub (literally about a 30 second walk from our front door). Great food and highly recommended, think we may be spending a little time here!!

History of the Rocket - (text and photos taken from the website)

"Acton was settled in the Middle Ages on the old road to Oxford, five miles out of London. The area was heavily wooded - Acton means 'Oak Town' in Anglo Saxon. In the 17th century, Acton's proximity to London made it a favourite summer retreat for courtiers and lawyers: the area was said to be blessed with very sweet air and Londoners took the waters - believed to be medicinal - at the wells on Old Oak Common. The coming of the railways in the nineteenth century meant that the rapidly growing number of city clerks working in London could live in Acton 'in the country' with easy access to the City. Houses and hotels sprung up near the railway stations - the Rocket was built in 1871 and was then called the Acton Station Hotel."


Lazy Sunday in Richmond

Sunday started with a sleep in and a lovely bacon and egg breakfast a' la Narelle ie. with some good old Aussie tomato sauce ;) much needed after meeting some friends the night before in Putney for dinner....and a few pints...and a few glasses of wine. Was lovely to catch up with Jen and Paul, some friends who I haven't seen in almost a year.

After the caffeine and grease injection we thought it might be nice to enjoy the lovely sunshine before it starts raining later this week! So off to Richmond it was. My first experience of the "station closed", "please use the replacement bus service" and "get the bus from *unintelligible stand number*" ensued. Is it too much to ask that the guy who's sole job it was to tell people this information all day actually spoke some sort of English?

We eventually found the right stop and after a replacement bus service, a walk and a tube we were in Richmond (as opposed to the original plan of an overland train for a measly two stops down the track). But I must say it was worth the effort....very English country village feel and absolutely gorgeous. We thought we'd take a walk along the Thames as it was so pretty.

We didn't count on the next bridge across the river being about 4 miles down the walking track! Although when we spotted the lovely Anglers pub on the other side of the bridge in Teddington we didn't complain ;) A Pimm's and lemonade (my first) and some food and we were once again happy campers. Until the mammoth journey to get home again via overland/walk/tube......ahhh gotta love London travel.

The Anglers pub in Teddington.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The Great Marmite Debate

Just another small note to reiterate a point....

Marmite IS NOT better than Vegemite. After being convinced to taste "real" Marmite (apparently the stuff you get in Australia isn't the same), I am still not convinced. Whilst I didn't feel the need to spit it out, it is in no way better than good ol' Vegemite....not least because of the weird honey like consistency....ewww!

First Week - Home Sweet Home!

After a few "issues" with Qantas and luggage we finally made our way to London via Singpore and Frankfurt, along with our 62kgs of luggage which we got on board for free.....pays to complain! Especially when you get an upgrade to a business sky bed seat for your longest 12 hour flight. Whoever said Qantas had bad customer service....*ahem*.

So I am now officially one week into my London experience. First job was finding a place to live (my generous brother kindly offered us the use of his spare room for a few days until we found something, although it quickly got crowded with our 62kgs worth of luggage!). We have opted for a share place as no leases necessary, although have found that it wasn't quite as easy as first thought. After having a non-response from one person after we'd looked and said we were interested, being one of about 15 groups of people to look at another, and spending 20 mins on the phone with an anal landlord who still wouldn't give me the address so we could have a look we were getting a little despondent. And this was all after spending hours and hours on websites checking places out, some of which you wouldn't want your worst enemy to have to live in.

Until my brother (finders fee on it's way!) checked out a new site and found us a fabulous place in Acton. We came to have a look and meet the housemates and were blown away. It's a fantastic 3 storey terrace house which has recently been completely redone inside so everything is high spec and brand new. Including the gourmet kitchen with built in coffee machine....I think I'm in heaven!! We have a great loft room with an ensuite which takes up the third floor with everything we could ever want. The people who own the place have the second floor with another couple on the first floor along with kitchen/lounge and even a lovely outside deck.

Our room (pre-62kgs luggage!).

The deck.

The fab kitchen.
So we are now finding our way around the area, supermarkets, newsagents, fruit and vegie and wine stores are close by, with loads of transport links. Including the bus to the giant Westfield in Shepherd's Bush.....yes we have already been :) And it's also close to Ealing to visit my brother and not too far from the Putney area where some friends live.
So with the living situation in hand, time to turn my attention to finding a job! Recruitment agencies here I come!