Friday, November 27, 2009

Winter and the NHS

I'm feeling like winter is almost upon's dark by 4pm and very very cold, even though all the locals keep telling me it's quite mild for this time of year. Maybe for the initiated! The last week has seen me add an extra layer for the walk to the tube and leave my coat on for the train journey (has up to this point been too hot while sardined in with other commuters). We are also relishing the discovery of Sainsbury's home delivered groceries, particularly with the cold. The thought of pushing through the crowds, lining up then lugging everything home on the bus just doesn't appeal!

We now have a car for a little while, courtesy of James's mum and dad who are back in Australia until next year. Took me three months to get used to not having a car, now it feels like a bit of a luxury to have one again....especially knowing there are only certain places you can take it (congestion charge, parking issues and traffic mean you wouldn't go anywhere near central London or busy areas). Will be nice to do some trips out of London though.

Will also be easier for us to get to Bodyflight for James to make use of his birthday present - a lesson at the indoor skydiving centre outside of London which is essentially a massive vertical wind tunnel! Fun :) I'm sure there will be hilarious photos to come!!

Christmas is approaching, have all my Christmas shopping done which is just as well because the shops are soooo busy! Never thought I would say this, but shopping at this time of year here just isn't really an enjoyable experience. I know, shock horror. But the Christmas lights are up, shop windows are filled with fake snow and all things festive and best of all...they aren't playing Christmas carols yet :) (can't stand them!).

Christmas dinner this year will be a free range turkey from the local butcher with all the trimmings, am busy looking up recipes having not cooked one before, suggestions welcome! Also have a feeling that I'll need to find leftover recipes as there are four of us...and 5kgs of turkey! Will be different having a hot dinner with the cold outside rather than a cold dinner with the hot outside like back home. No firing up the BBQ this year!

This week also saw me register with a doctor. Can't just call a GP here and see whoever you like, you have to register at one in your area and then they have to accept you. The process was quite easy for James, being a Brit, and should have been easy for me. Except in true British NHS style they lost all my paperwork I filled in. All 3 or 4 pages of my complete medical history. Lovely! Then proceeded to tell me it wasn't an issue as I could just fill it in again. Hmmm! So I shouldn't be concerned my details were floating around somewhere? Ok, will just have to take their word for it! Then went into the appointment with the nurse, who you have to see before being allowed to make appointments with the GP, only to be asked every single question that was on the paperwork. That I filled out twice. Looooving the NHS. Although it is free so shouldn't complain too much!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Some shots of the last few weeks......

Bonfire night at Wimbledon Park.

Massive Guy Fawkes bonfire, could feel the heat from about 100m away. Good thing, was damn cold!!

Christmas lights at Regent/Oxford Street.

Christmas window at Hamleys toy store on Regent Street.

Colin Firth turning on the Christmas Lights at Regent Street, is him!!

Sunny but cold day in Oxford.


Mmmmm pies in Oxford.

Wimbledon Common, only a 5 minute walk from our new house.

Beautiful Wimbledon Common (didn't spot a womble, will keep my eyes peeled next time).