J’taime Paree

Hello, it’s me again. It’s a gorgeous and sunny day in London as I write this. So for the next installment of the travel diaries, here it goes. At the end of May we spent a weekend in beautiful Paris. I have been fortunate enough to have been to Paris before but hadn’t seen too much of it. The first time I went I ran my first ever full marathon there and the second time was when I stayed one night to see Celine Dion perform there. Also, this time would be different as I wasn’t on my own.

Started the first day off with a fresh croissant and cup of coffee. This was at a café, around the corner from our hotel. The temperature was due to be a scorching 34 degrees.

 

After breakfast, we took a lovely walk alongside the Seine. We arrived at the incredible louvre, to do some exploring. It is such a huge place but amazing to see the Venus di Milo and the famous Mona Lisa. The Italian statues are something else to see as well!

 

We went to a wonderful place called Angelica’s for some tea and cake.. Then we paid a visit to Notre dame which is such a stunning cathedral. As we were walking back we were treated to woman on the street singing opera!

 

Later that evening I was surprised with a wonderful dinner cruise along the seine. The view that you get of Eiffel tower was amazing. It having been such a hot day, loads of people were just sitting alongside the river. To top it off a Celine Dion French song, called amor existe encore, came on as we were eating dinner. It was as if they knew I was on the cruise haha…

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The next morning, we went to a church called Sacre Coeur (The sacred heart of Paris). This is in the montmarte district. On top of the steps here you get a fabulous view if the city of Paris.

 

Near there we found a place called the Hardware Societe for breakfast. This was a little gem of a place. The food, coffee and the feel of the place was brilliant. I highly recommend it.

 

We took a walk to where the famous Moulin rouge is located.  I loved the film so to see the actual place was a real highlight for me. I was waiting for Nicole Kidman and Ewan Mcgregor to pop out and sing…

 

Finally it was time to head to Roland Garros for some French open tennis. I had never been before and was super excited! On my bucket list is to visit all four grand slam tennis tournaments. So I’ve now been to Wimbledon and Roland Garros. I am halfway there. After browsing the shop we made our way on Suzanne Lenglen Court for a day of tennis on the clay courts. I loved every minute. It has a completely different atmosphere to Wimbledon. I was hoping for glimpse of Nadal, as he was practicing on one of the courts. The crowd was quite big though so I couldn’t spot him.

 

After a day of sun and tennis we headed back for some dinner. Later that evening we were booked to go to the Lido, the famous French cabaret. I was in awe of how magical it was. They had a woman swallowing swords, loads of dancing, a wonderful French singer and more. There was even this grand sparkly chandelier that came out from the bottom of the stage with dancers on. It was spectacular.

 

Soon we had reached our last day.. We went to the Eiffel tower to get a good view and to be able to get some obligatory tourist pics .

 

Then we headed off to our second day of tennis at Roland Garros. This time we were on the Phillippe-Chatrier court (Their centre court)  Nadal was due to play on the other court . we did get to see some great tennis from Novak Djokovic and a great women’s match between Brady and French hopeful Mladenovic. It was a great fight between the two of them.

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Now after a lovely fun filled weekend in paris, it was time to get the Eurostar back. We never imagined that this would be quite an eventful trip back to London. So two young guys decided they wanted to have a good time on the journey back and bought a few drinks from the bar. They were in the queue in front of me. They seemed to be on a mission. About an hour into the train journey an announcement came over saying that we would be making an unscheduled stop in Calais due to disruptive passengers. I immediately thought its those two guys from the bar as they were giving the staff hassles by going behind the bar etc. So to cut a long story short it was a wait to get them off the train. Then the French border police decided the train wasn’t secure anymore. So we had to disembark and then be rechecked onto the train. This took hours. We were to due to be in London at 21.40 UK time. We ended up finally getting into London at 4am. I got home at 5.45am. I felt so sorry for the young kids. What’s life though, without a few hiccups?

 

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To Tash on your 33rd Birhday

To Tash on your 33rd birthday

 

So another year has gone by. Time seems to be racing away. I feel like I’ve barely blinked and I’m a year older. Edging ever closer to the big four-O! Age they say is just a number baby and I don’t plan on letting it stop me. It seems to be this time of year that I always berate myself for not being any further than I was the year before. I begin to feel like a failure. Perhaps I haven’t done everything I set out to do does that mean I’ve failed at life? 

 

Instead I’m going to reflect over the past year and the good things that have happened. 

 

Over the past year there have been some very special memories which I will always hold close to my heart. 

 

In February I got to see my gorgeous friend marry her wonderful hubby. The ceremony took place under the blue African skies, deep in the heart of bush. It was such a gorgeous lodge in South Africa, where the wedding took place. You know you are in the African Bush when you see zebra roaming around the lodge and in the early hours you could hear the roar of a lion in the distance. It was a truly incredible weekend, which I will never forget. It made my heart burst to see my friend find her happiness and to share in their special day. 

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While I was home I also got to see my beautiful friend and her group called MitzyGeorge launch their single called I am home. MitzyGeorge is a country girl group consisting of 3 extremely talented ladies. They are truly mesmerising on stage. Definitely check out their music. There is something so special and surreal about seeing one of your dearest friends performing on stage, doing what they are passionate about. Such a overwhelming sense of pride I felt. I got some quality time with my friend and her wonderful family too and I will always hold those memories dear. 

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Time also spent with my mom and family which was wonderful when I was home. I was able to give my dad a hug on his 70th birthday. I was so happy it worked out I could be there. We got to share at dance too at the Italian club. Some truly special times. 

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Another significant thing that has happened is that I’ve met a lovely man, with a very kind and gentle heart. He makes me feel beautiful and cherished. With him I can be completely myself. This is something I’ve never had before or felt I was really deserving of.

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Over the past few months there have been some wonderful moments we’ve shared. Including a first trip to the amazing city of Edinburgh and my first ever time at Roland Garros for the French open tennis. 

 

So I have a lot of things running through my head that I would like to achieve. In general I am quite a patient person but when it comes to things I want though, I want it all to happen right now.So for the year ahead I will try to give myself one big thing to try work towards. I will be a bit easier on myself and not have a list of 10 huge things to achieve within a year. Maybe that way it won’t be so overwhelming and I won’t set myself up for a fall so to speak.

 

Also I want to try not let the inner critic in me drown out every other voice. When I look at the person in the mirror staring back at me, I want to believe that they are worth something. I want to try be a better version of myself, and stay motivated. As they say you need to make your own magic. No one is going to write the book for me. I’m the author of my own story and I need to tell it. So for this year my goal is to finish or get a huge majority of that novel done. So go out and give it all you got! The only one stopping you is yourself. 

 

I know the world seems to be in despair at the moment with all that is going on. Watching the news these days is depressing. It’s so hard to keep positive and believe at times that it will get better. Being right near the area where the recent terrorist attack in London took place, it does shake your perspective up. It makes you realise what a precious gift life is. Every moment is a treasure and we need to make the most of it. Hug loved ones tighter and truly be grateful for them. I want to try not let these things crush my spirit or stop my love for life. Maybe my heart is naive in believing there is still goodness in the world but I can’t let the world change who I am. Our mind is a powerful thing. So I am going to try laugh more, worry less about the little things & stuff I can’t control(I mean worrying means you truly do suffer twice) and be less harsh on myself. I’m going make the most of times spent with loved ones. I won’t take them for granted. 

 

Here is to bring 33 and not letting go of those dreams. Here is to my 34th year ahead..

 

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I’m going to make lemonade if the months ahead decide to give me lemons. Cheesy I know but right now maybe a bit of cheese is just what’s needed. 🙂 

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