Barcelona – Photo Journal

In December I was lucky enough to go on a little three day escape to Barcelona, Spain! I’d never been to Spain before and haven’t really travelled too much through Europe, so this was definitely a welcome experience. I didn’t really know what to expect, and I only had a limited understanding of Spain’s history. Growing up in Asia, I actually only really knew about Spain’s colonial history – which isn’t too useful when you’re visiting the country itself, though there were some surprising elements of the city that did remind me of my travels through South East Asia.

The trip was a gift to my boyfriend, Hugo, as he’d mentioned how he’d love to see Messi play again in his lifetime – and even though a lifetime is definitely a long time, football isn’t exactly the most predictable of sports. Even though Barca is one of the best teams, Messi’s still one of the best and most sought-after players – so who knows where he might go! On top of the trip itself (flights and a hotel in the eastern districts not far from Sagrada Familia), I bought Hugo a ticket to see a match, and the both of us tickets to do a tour of the stadium and football museum. Yep. Me in Camp Nou, reading about football and looking at trophies and other football accoutrement. Amazing and hugely unlikely scenes – though, believe it or not, I actually did enjoy myself!

The following are just some of my favourite photos from the trip, and then some of the photos from Camp Nou, too. We were only there for two full days, but managed to pack a lot in. A personal highlight for me was when Hugo went off to his football match and I spent the whole afternoon roaming the Gothic District alone! It was so beautiful. Another highlight was seeing Carmen performed in the Palau de la Musica, which was one of the most ornate and beautiful theatres I’ve ever had the pleasure of visiting – never mind seeing something so incredible be performed in.

Anyway, enjoy!

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Photo Journal: Tate Britain

Hi all! A couple of weekends ago my boyfriend and I ventured down the river to the original Tate. I hadn’t been in at least ten years (!!), and as I am someone who supposedly enjoys art and pretends to be cultured etc., it seemed like a pretty good idea to pay it another visit.

To get down the river, we took a boat – which was super irrationally exciting! I’ve never been on the Thames itself and I avoid most things boat related (unless they’re small and fast, ya feel?), so this was a pretty new experience. It was more expensive that getting the bus or tube, but was surprisingly fast and definitely a lovely experience – on the tube you get oppressive darkness; on the boat you get some wonderful views. I think I’ll definitely try and take someone who’s visiting London on one of the boat rides, just for the experience and the view; you properly tick off lots of landmarks in a short period of time.

I made sure we sat right up front (and that I got the window seat, I’m pretty possessive over the window seat..), but the views were good regardless of where you were sitting. Continue reading

Photo Journal: Devon & Dartmoor

Two weekends ago my boyfriend and I ventured to the southeast of England, to see family and to attend his gran’s 80th birthday party. It’s the first time I’ve been to Devon, and the first time I’d seen moors! It was overwhelmingly vast, I’d never really seen landscape like it before – in a way it was almost reminiscent of rural Australia. Dartmoor is Hardy country, and whether it was the power of the moors themselves or the memories of his writing, they felt utterly alive.

– Outfit –

Coat from Target, suedette shorts from New Look, cami from Primark, calf boots from Asos.

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Photo Journal: Warner Bros. Studios

Tickets can be bought here, and I’d recommend booking them in advance, especially if you’re going during the holiday season or when there’s a special event on!

This is a must-visit for any fan, it’s really that simple. Everything you ever wanted to know about the movies and cast, every behind-the-scenes detail, all the production and design stuff.. it’s an absolute dream. Mum and I had lots of tears in our eyes, and I had a solid cry at the end of it. It’s funny, because one of my friends had visited and had said that it changed her impression of the movies, understanding that the green screens behind it and seeing the models and animatronics, but for me it somehow made it all the more real. I mean, Harry Potter really does exist for me, and I can’t begin to talk about how and why it’s so important (that’s a whole blog post on it’s own), but walking into that last room and seeing Hogwarts. My god, I bawled. There was nothing disappointing about this experience. They were incredibly accommodating as well, especially as I turned up in my wheelchair and had only informed them of it literally an hour before.

Make sure you try the Butterbeer ice cream, I enjoyed it a lot more than the drink! And don’t forget to pick up some chocolate frogs and sugar quills in the gift shop at the end.

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Syon Park: Photo Journal

The weeks leading up to my surgery I was determined to spend as much time outside as possible, making the most of what little ‘proper’ summer I actually had. Long walks, friends visiting, lots of shopping and galleries. The one thing I desperately did want to do though (and have done for a long time), was visit Chatsworth in Derbyshire. Why? Easy. It’s the house and grounds they used as Pemberley in Pride and Prejudice. I was, and am, utterly set on going there, hiking my way through the Peak District and recreating as many scenes as possible. I visualised myself with flowing hair, standing on cliff edges with eyes half closed as the wind whipped my face. Etc. All images were certainly without a cast, airboot or crutches involved. But it was not to be. Instead, I returned to a trusty Buzzfeed article of ways to escape London, and the National Trust website.

Syon Park. I’d seen this Buzzfeed article shortly after it had come out, and Syon Park quickly made it to my #1 must-visit list — mostly because of its idyllic looking conservatory, I have to say. I knew next to nothing about it, aside from that Queen Victoria had once stayed there as a girl. And so, with my long-suffering boyfriend in tow, we set off for the house.

Unfortunately, as my luck would have it, the conservatory was actually closed due to a wedding reception taking place that afternoon, but I did get to a have a good look at the outside of it, and basked in the wild flowers out the front. The house itself, however, almost made up for the disappointment of the conservatory being closed. I have never seen so many portraits in a stately home before, never. It quite honestly rivaled the National Portrait Gallery. The people who worked in the home were absolutely full of information – historical, and on the current duke and his three grown-up children.

The gardens are open seven days a week, 10.30AM-5PM, and the house is open Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday, 10AM-5PM. For more information and price lists, their website is here.

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