It Gets Better, or at least, It Gets Different

10 10 2011

I’m extremely fortunate in my life to have made some amazing friends, one of them, I met just a couple of years ago.
A very talented individual, but a wise and caring one also by the name of Lily Armani.

Some of you may have heard of the "It Gets Better" program created by Dan Savage and his partner Terry.  This program was created in response to the suicides of teenagers who were bullied because they were gay or because their peers suspected that they were gay. Its goal is to prevent suicide among LGBT youth by having gay adults convey the message that these teens’ lives will improve.

Lily had something to share for this program, and share she did.  Lily is no stranger to adversity and has a very positive approach to it.

Granted I’m biased, but truly the video she has made as her contribution for this program is a powerful and moving one, and I don’t believe it’d be overstating things to say this, but I’m sure if it’s seen by the right people, the people who need this message in their lives, it could save lives.

Watch it for yourself, and please share it with others.

Lily Armani–It Gets Different

To Lily Armani, you’re an absolute inspiration, and as always I wish you the best of everything. Keep bringing joy to the masses lady and may as much joy as you bring be bestowed back on you! xo

Sheer Genius!

28 05 2010

Now I’m a fan of using cameras as tools for more than just recording memories.  I regularly use mine as a reminder device, especially of where I parked when I’m in a multi-level carpark, like at the airport.

But when I stumbled across this blog entry of someone’s personal use of their camera as a it’s own security or tracking device I had to laugh, and marvel at the genius behind it.

Judge for yourself.  All credit goes to the author Darren Rowse, the blog; Digital Photography School, and the lateral thinking of the camera owner; Andrew McDonald.

How To Get Your Camera Back by Andrew Rowse

Earth Day

22 04 2009

It’s be nice to the environment day here in the U.S.A.  Although quite truthfully, it should be Earth Day EVERY DAY!

I do my bit, I’ve replaced all the globes in the house (where I can) with energy efficient CFL globes, turn off the heater, minimise water usage, have an energy audit performed on the house to see where I can improve it, and I even wash out all the recyclables, such as bottles, cans etc. before they go in the recycle bin so that they’re not thrown out with the rubbish.

Of course there’s much more to it than that, and there’s more information available at the Earthday Network website.

Right now though, I’m going to turn off the television, all the lights and go to bed early.

G’night all!

Absolute heartbreak

9 02 2009

I’ve been fortunate, my family and friends to my knowledge all remain unscathed from the weekends fires.

Fires that have been touted as being the worst in Australian history, with a toll on human life and wellbeing that far exceeds that of the Bali Bombings several years ago.

For the last 36 hours the news has been fully focused on the tragedy, but it’s a tragedy that has touched the entire country, and from contact I’ve had with my friends in other parts of the world, many people outside of Australia.

With each hour that passes the death toll climbs, it’s currently over 100.w-fire-aus-cp-584-6213265

I’m at a loss for words, so I can’t begin to imagine the sense of loss and helplessness that affects those directly affected by the weekends fires, fires that in some cases continue to burn.

Australia is in mourning, and yet there are still stories of survival, hope and joy where people are being reunited after being separated, and the sheer outpouring of support, monies and items from the public are outstanding.

It’s moments like these that make you realise that no matter how bad things may be, they can always be worse.

My heart goes out to all those affected.

Donations are being collected through the Red Cross via the Australian Red Cross Victorian Bush Fire Appeal 2009.

If you’re so inclined, your donation will be greatly appreciated.

Merry "White” Christmas!

25 12 2008

Happy Holidays Everyone!

This is officially the first Christmas that I’ve spent in this country where we’ve actually celebrated the day.  We haven’t decorated, outside of a wreath on the front of the house and displaying the Christmas cards, but we’ve certainly got plenty of “festive” real icicles hanging off all the guttering outside.

Yesterday was fun, after a sleep in we re-fueled the car (fuel is running low here because of the snowy conditions) and stocked up on groceries (we needed them, and it’s nice to have food in case the unexpected happens, whether it be guests, or even worse weather conditions), and then returned home where I dug out the driveway and paths again.
Admittedly it was much easier this time because less snow had fallen, and we’d had some rain which made it a little less also.

A couple of friends dropped by in the afternoon who had become Christmas orphans due to the weather.  Their plans to travel to be with their families have been cancelled as the distance is to far to travel in bad snow in a car, while they were watching television I tried my hand at assembling my very first Gingerbread House.

Urgh!  The icing must have been a little runny, despite following the instructions, the fact that I was rushing it didn’t help any either.  The roof panels kept sliding off as the icing wasn’t setting, and in the end, I had a “Christmas Tantrum” and decided it would be a Gingerbread House post earthquake, and it’s since been partly devoured.  I think only two walls remain standing the rest of it is lying on a plate.

The highlight of the evening though was attending a friends Christmas Eve Drinks party.  We met new people, had a couple of drinks, tried some traditional mulled wine, and generally had a great time.  It really felt like Christmas, for me, that was the first time since I’ve been in this country.

There were children, snowflake balloons, a Christmas tree, gifts, and smiling faces everywhere, and all the children were completely obsesses with a fantastic website called that let’s them track Santa as he travels around the world delivering gifts, along with sneak videos of him in key locations, such as the North Pole, Sydney, Auckland, Seattle etc.   Even as an adult, it was a complete joy to view, more so because of the pure excitement it elicited in the children themselves.  Whoever designed that site is a genius.  It even has some Santa facts, my favourite one, and please don’t quote me, this isn’t verbatim was:

Santa’s snow is the fastest moving thing on the earth.  However the speed that he travels at is classified.

What a brilliant way to give a fact and then negate the need to elaborate on the answer.  Genius I tell you.  Genius!

Thank you Millers, we had a great time!   Happy Birthday to the lovely Alexandra who turned 10 yesterday too!  Two days of presents for this young lady.  Good work! 😉

Once we arrived home, I phoned HOME.  Not like E.T., my finger doesn’t glow.  I actually dialed up my family back in Australia.  Admittedly I did this feeling quite a bit guilty as I’d meant to do it earlier in the day while they were all together having Christmas lunch.
As it turned out, a minor Christmas Miracle, they were all still together as they were having a Christmas Leftovers Dinner.  Brilliant.  I got to talk to everyone, Mum, Dad, Nan, my sister Kate, brother in-law Trevor, and my nephew Jack.  Well Jack and I didn’t really talk, I talked and he made some very amusing noises back down the phone, but that was more than enough to make me laugh.  It was still a little bittersweet though.   But my family did have an early Christmas for me in November while I was visiting, so I had the actual experience a few weeks ago to compensate further.

After all that, it’s relatively redundant to say that I slept well.  But I did.  The only thing waking me this morning was a certain grey kitten called Annie.  She spends every evening asleep on the bed, until morning where she climbs on my chest, stares at me with her big orange eyes, and “Wills me awake!”.  When I do finally awaken, the excited response makes me think that in her mind, I was actually dead overnight, and have just arisen purely for her enjoyment.  My little girl is so excited she starts purring (loudly enough to wake Mark who grumbles.  Who grumbles at a kitten’s purr?  Scrooge!) and excitedly runs up and down the bed grabbing my hand with her paws and putting it on her head, licking and nibbling my fingers until I get up, at which point she runs down the hallway barely 10cm in front of my swinging feet, jumping up periodically trying to grab my hand with her paws.  Every morning it’s a cute display.
Generally it ends around the same time I feed her.  *laugh*  I see right through her scheme.
Oliver on the other hand, lifts his head, looks at you, and then snuggles back into the bed for the long haul.  It’s not unusual for him to be “made into the bed” when I straighten the covers each morning, and to rise sometime in the early afternoon.  Spoilt!

Now, on to Christmas, as today is Christmas morning, and it’s snowing.  It’s a true white Christmas, there’s snow in abundance and more falling as I type this.

Ok, that’s enough typing from me, I’m going to have a lazy warming enjoying the heater in my pj’s before we meet some friends at a restaurant for Christmas lunch.


Be safe and stay warm, or cool as the case may be! 😉

Lisa Williams, Medium and Clairvoyant

30 07 2008

Today is day two of being back in my own bed, and I couldn’t be happier.  The pets are loving it also.

I’m almost back into a routine again too.

This evening we’re heading into Seattle to see Lisa Williams, a Medium and Clairvoyant.  I discovered her while watching television some time ago; Life Among the Dead, and must confess I love her.  Of all the similar shows available, she’s, to me, the most honest and believable.

I guess you could say I’m a fan.

So, I’m very much looking forward to this evening.  Mark as a sceptic decided to come along, good for him, but if he talks inappropriately, he may have to use her to make contact with the living…  If you get what I mean. ;)  *laugh*

Hooroo for now!

Feeling the love!

14 07 2008

The “Shelly Love”.

I’ve mentioned before that I’ve been having Physical Therapy, and I get it from the bestest ever person; Shelly, and it hurts like the “bejeezus”, but it works.

Well when I started it was for my shins, they’re getting better, and then it was for my knee, now that’s getting better.  Now, it’s for my wrist, so effective today, I’m on three sessions a week.

Good thing I don’t work!  I’d never have the time!

The shins were due to a weakness in my lower back and glutes, the knee was also partially due to that weakness.  As for the wrist, well that’s an old injury, one from my early teens when I fell and apparently broke both wrists.  Only at the time I didn’t notice as I also smashed in my front teeth and broke my nose, so the majority of the pain was elsewhere so I never noticed my wrists.

Until now.  I have restricted movement in my left wrist, I’ve always been aware of it, but since I’m predominantly right handed it’s never been a problem.  But now it is.

Wow!  I knew the leg bone was connected to the knee bone, the knee bones was connected to the shin bone etc.  But it’s true, everything really is connected, if one thing doesn’t do it’s job properly, or your form/movement isn’t optimal it really does create further problems.

It’s all under control though, my glutes are coming along nicely, and apparently I’ll soon have “Buns of Steel”.  Haha!  With my luck, they’ll rust!

That’s about it really, tomorrow will be an early start as I’m taking the car in for a service, then I think I’ll go for a ride, workout, come home and try Wii Fit.  Mark bought it on the weekend.

I certainly have enough to keep me busy.

Meanwhile, if you’re the giving type, and want to support a worthy cause, a cause based in America, therefore it’s probably best that unless you’re SUPER generous, you not donate unless you live here.

A friend of mine is raising money for a 3 day bike ride of 172 miles, through the Cascade Mountains and in doing so is raising money for the Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital.

If you’re up for some donation catalysed karma…  Go to Mary Bridge Foundation – Courage Classic, follow the prompts and help me help my friend raise some money.  You’ll feel all warm, fuzzy and generous afterwards.  I promise! 🙂

If you’re a Microsoft employee, you should definitely donate, as Microsoft will match your donation!

Cheers, and thanks if you’re generous. 🙂

Bikeless but theatrically entertained

14 06 2008

Well, the day was supposed to start with me returning to the bike shop to pick up my new possession.  But unfortunately it didn’t quite work the way I planned.

You see overnight somewhere in Redmond a power transformer exploded rendering the Bike Store power less – literally.  So unfortunately they were unable to process the sale for the accessories that I purchased.
They probably could have done it manually, but unfortunately I was working with limited time as we had tickets for a show in Seattle at the Paramount Theatre.

The show…  Avenue Q.

Until yesterday morning I’d never even heard of it.  Now, I’ve seen it.

OMG it was awesome, and bloody hilarious.

Think Sesame Street for adults, complete with full frontal puppet nudity and sex.  Strange…  BUT very funny!

If I wasn’t feeling so tired from the day and a game of racquetball this afternoon I’d explain more.  But you’re going to have to follow the link above and check it out for yourself.  Actually, here’s an excerpt from the web site itself.

AVENUE Q is Broadway’s smash-hit 2004 Tony Award® winner for Best Musical, Best Score and Best Book. A hilarious show full of heart and hummable tunes, AVENUE Q is about trying to make it in NYC with big dreams and a tiny bank account. Called "one of the funniest shows you’re ever likely to see" by Entertainment Weekly, AVENUE Q features a cast of people and puppets who tell the story in a smart, risqué and downright entertaining way.
AVENUE Q is the story of Princeton, a bright-eyed college grad who comes to New York City with big dreams and a tiny bank account. He soon discovers that the only neighborhood in his price range is Avenue Q; still, the neighbors seem nice. There’s Brian the out-of-work comedian and his therapist fiancée Christmas Eve; Nicky the good-hearted slacker, and his roommate Rod – a Republican investment banker who seems to have some sort of secret; an Internet addict called Trekkie Monster; and a very cute kindergarten teaching assistant named Kate. And would you believe the building’s superintendent is Gary Coleman?!? (Yes, that Gary Coleman.) Together, Princeton and his newfound friends struggle to find jobs, dates, and their ever-elusive purpose in life.

Ok, I’m off for dinner with a friend now and a relatively early evening.


Last Day In Paris

1 04 2008

This is more of a reminder for me so I don’t forget anything, and I probably will.

It’s our last night in Paris, we’ve just arrived back at the hotel from Moulin Rouge, and now have to pack the cases for the morning as we’re leaving pretty early to catch our flight back to Melbourne, Australia, via Heathrow and the dreaded Terminal 5.  We’ll be lucky if our flights aren’t canceled and our luggage makes it through.

Ok…  Today we were at the following locations:

Grande Arche
Arc de Triomphe
Eiffel Tower

and the evening ended as previously mentioned with Moulin Rouge….  and now, I have to dash, there are bags to be packed.


*** Update 11th April, 9.59am

This has been a long time in the making, but I’m hoping to get it over and done with now, so that I only have to worry about the daily entries.  I’ve been putting it off for long enough.

Our last day in Paris was one of the busiest days of the entire trip so far, we quite possibly walked the furthest we’d walked on any other day, and I even managed to get fleeced by gypsies.  A day well spent really.

So here goes, I’ll attempt to re-cap it from memory.

As with every day in Paris so far, the morning started with a shower, then a leisurely dash down 7 flights of stairs (I have to get my workouts in where I can 😉 ) to have breakfast.

Which usually consisted of Bircher Muesli, scrambled eggs, smoked salmon and a pot of tea, before grabbing our cameras and hitting the roads to take in the next day of sights.  Today of course was no different.

*** Updated Update 12th April, 7.33am

The network apologises for the unscheduled break in broadcast…

After breakfast, we caught a train on the Paris Metropolitan, which was beautifully located, just across the road from the Hotel.  In fact it ran underneath, as occasionally while eating breakfast you could actually feel the building vibrate as trains passed below.

The first stop for the day was the Grande Arche, essentially, it’s an Arch, and it’s huge, square, and in-line with the Arc de Triomphe, and completely impressive.  Incidentally, in the 2004 film, Godzilla: Final Wars, it is one of the Parisian monuments destroyed by the giant insect Kamacuras…   Well there you go, travel and trivia!  😉  I must add, I only know this as it’s listed in the Wikipedia link for the Arch. 😉
Many photos later it was back on the train and off to the next location, incidentally also an arch.

But not before we’d traversed the Champs de Elysees and had lunch.

The Arc de Triomphe is a Parisian landmark that most people recognise, whether it be by name or by sight.  If you grew up in Australia through the late 1980’s to early 1990’s, just think of the two Yoplait tubs.

This monument is truly magnificent, from the top looking down (568 stairs, all of which I ran from top to bottom), it seems that it’s the hub of a wheel with all roads leading to it.  The views are absolutely breathtaking, the only problem was the sheer lack of time, and the narrowness of the stairs.  In fact, they’re allegedly so narrow, that we were told to not enter at the same time as our backpacks were too wide.
So, while Mark toured the Arc I waited at the bottom, and on his return I toured it.  As it turns out there was plenty of room, but it was nice to have a rest from our hectic pace.

On the way back from the Arc de Triomphe on our way to our next destination, I was stopped by a woman in the underground pedestrian walk.  She started asking where I was from, asked me to hold up a finger, and very quickly started tying red, blue and white thread around it and braiding it, giving me advice on travel, how to wear a backpack properly so as not to injure myself, and then telling me at midnight I’d have good luck and could make 3 wishes.  She did the same for Mark, who was very unimpressed that I’d stopped.

Wishes and advice over, we thanked her and went to leave, that’s when she hit us with the price for our little pieces of braided thread.  10 Euros.  Expensive, but for experience I didn’t see it as being too exorbitant, so went to pay it, then she said “No.  Each.”.   Mark, instantly went into the No, no, no, you should never have stopped…  etc.
There was no way I was paying 20 Euros, she tried to haggle to 15 Euros telling me it was her job, her “pimp” even tried to hustle us for money.  She got her 10, I had never had a problem with that, she pointed out that this was her job, I replied that she was lucky to have a job, I didn’t, we left it at 10 Euros, and we left.  She was polite enough to wish us well on our way.  I guess 10 Euros is still better than nothing, and a small price to pay for a story.

Now I’m not entirely sure, but I’m convinced she was a Gypsy, and this was the first time I’d been fleeced, it’s kind of fun, and definitely a story to tell.  Besides…  Whether it’s superstitious or not, I’m not messing with Gypsies the day before I’m to board a plane to fly half way around the world.  😉

Mark is still not happy about it, and cut his bracelet off as soon as he got home, he’d have pulled it off sooner if he’d could have gotten it off his wrist, and until I pointed out that while he was wearing it, it was essentially like a nightclub passout.  The other Gypsies or “fleecers” would see it, and think “Ahhh they’ve already been harvested”, and leave us in peace.  For the record, I still think it’s funny, and I still have my bracelet, and I made the wishes!

Moving on…

Next and final stop for the day (not the evening!) was the Eiffel Tower.  Wow!  This tower is awesome, both from the bottom, and from the top.   You can see it for absolute miles.  Of course, again, it was just a quick visit.  Photos at the bottom, a ride to the top, photos at the top, then back on the train and a manic dash back to the hotel to shower and change to get to Moulin Rouge.

I don’t think I’ve ever showered, ironed a shirt, and dressed so fast in my life, just to run back out the door, dive onto a train and try and make it to Moulin Rouge in time for our 7pm dinner seating.  We needn’t have rushed.  There was quite a queue when we arrived.

But, before we arrived, we had to traverse the long street from the Metropolitan (underground train system) to the venue itself.  The street is like the hub of all things sexual.  I’m fairly sure you can get anything there, it’s all red flashing lights and seediness, with promoters out the front of each venue beckoning you in.  I’ve never said no, so many times in such a short period before in my life.

Anyway, back to Moulin Rouge.   We queued for about 20 minutes before we made our way into the venue.  Keep in mind that for dinner and the show it cost us nearly $400AUD.

Once inside, we were all told that we had to cloak our jackets, phones, cameras and bags, which wouldn’t have been such a problem, but then you’re charged 2 Euro per item.   Of course we also wanted to get a program to remember the event with which was another 20 Euro.  Feeling a whole lot poorer, and lighter, we met with the Maitre D to confirm our reservation and be allocated our table.

Oh, I must add at this stage, that the price included a bottle of Champagne for us to share.  Half a bottle each.  It didn’t last long, but at the replacement price of 25 Euro for a half bottle or 50 Euro for a full one, we drank water.

The show itself was fantastic, the costumes, the dancing, the flexibility…  *laugh*

There were showgirls, showboys, minature ponies, suspended dancers, feats of strength, a swimming pool that seemed to appear from nowhere where a stage had been previously and a whole pile of huge snakes, in said swimming pool.  Show wise… the experience is worth the money.  For the food and service… not so much.

Over all though a great night, one truly not done justice with text.

So that’s it, last night in Paris.  It was a huge day, and a huge night, that saw us returning to the Hotel and spending a couple of hours packing our cases in preparation for the morning’s flight.  A flight that was obviously successful, as I’m typing this in Australia now. 😉


Out and about in London town… the update and ongoing adventure

27 03 2008

Well, it’s Thursday morning around 9.12am and as I type this I’m sitting on a train heading South to Devon to visit my Great Auntie Olive who I haven’t seen for almost 15 – 20 years.  I’m fairly sure I was still in my late teens the last time she saw me.  So it’s certainly been a while.

It is kind of nice to be able to sit on a train with a table and be able to type away to your hearts content, although it’d be nice if the power points worked, and it’d be even better again if there was Internet access, oh well.  There was on the last train, the one that we caught from Edinburgh to London earlier in the week.

I have no idea where we are currently but there are lots of open green spaces to the left of the train, and some industrial ones to the right.

In other news, my sister still hasn’t had her baby, despite being almost marinated in drugs to induce the birth, so I believe that later on today she’ll undergo a c-section.  Hang in there Kato, I’m cheering for you over here in the UK, keep safe, and see you and the new “stubborn lil-monkey” soon.

Moving on…  literally and in prose.

The purpose of this entry is to further flesh out the original one: Out and about in London town…

So here goes, I’ll cast my mind back a few days, and hope I can retrieve it when I’m done.

Tuesday marked the beginning of my first day in London.  We arrived late the evening before from Edinburgh so despite being a little tired from the activities I was excited to get out and about and see what there was to be seen.

Now, I’ve always been aware that London is a European country and that there’d obviously be many thousands of tourists from all over the world, but I really wasn’t prepared for the high number of non-English speaking people I was to encounter.  Nor was I even remotely prepared for the complete lack of manners that most of them had.

You always expect when visiting tourist attractions that there’ll be “hustle and bustle” as people jostle to ensure they see the sights and experience whatever there is to be experienced, but this, in true, Marjory from Little Britain style was “SOMETHING ELSE“.  The best way to explain the feeling is to imagine you’re the ball in a pinball machine being pushed back and forward.  A very trying test for one’s patience I can assure you, and certainly a time that I wished I was able to curse in multiple languages.  *laugh*

Moving on…

To get to our destinations for the day we had to navigate the London Underground, which in reality is pretty simple, especially as it’s relatively similar to the City Loop in Melbourne where I’m from.  The only real difference is that the system here is more complex, and from my experience so far, the trains actually run on time more often than not.  The only real downside is that these stations are not really non-able bodied person friendly.  There are stairs everywhere, which as far as I’m concerned is a bonus given the extra eating we’ve been doing.

Having found the right train for our destination, the first stop for the day was:

Madam Tussauds the World famous wax museum.  Having purchased our tickets online we were excited at being able to escape having to queue for this popular attraction.  We couldn’t have been more incorrect in our assumptions had we actually just arrived unannounced and expected to get them on the day.
It seems that hundreds of other people had also had the same idea, and the queue for the entrance was a good 100m long.  Fortunately it only took about 20 minutes to get to the ticket booth, where we had to exchange our online voucher for actual tickets.

Once inside we were “herded” (remember, I said there were hundreds of people), towards the elevators, which delivered us to the first floor and a wall of flashing lights and images of Paparazzi with recorded  Paparazzi’esque quotes being played raucously to imitate the experience of “Celebrity meets Tabloid Press”.  If my short experience of how bloody tedious and annoying it was is anything to go by, I’m happy for someone else to deal with fame.  It’s brash, noisy, and outright annoying.  Which I guess was the point.

Before I go on though, my random interjection statement for the day is, I’m exceedingly happy right now, my cup it could be said, runneth over with “joi de vivre”, and I’d kill for a Snickers right now.

Back to the story… 😉

Once you make it past the Paparazzi you make your way into the first room where there are dozens of celebrity replicas.  Some of whom I knew, other’s…  well, not so much.  No matter, they were pretty cool, the ones I saw.

We took many photos, either posing with the figures or placing our “travelling companions” with them.  Of course we weren’t the only ones doing this, and while we did our best to be polite and wait our turn, not everyone worked with the same ethics.  People were literally pushing us out of the way, or pushing in to be photographed first, if you’re a polite person or less than assertive person, give this place a miss, you’ll not enjoy it.
I kept my cool throughout, although could be heard to snarl on more than one occasion under my breath, “if one more f’ing person pushes me I’ll tear their f’ing face off!”.  The whole experience became very old, very fast.

There was one woman in particular, who seemed to be moving in the same direction as us, and who had pushed past me several times, either standing directly in front of my camera lens, or pushing and shoving to get the shot she was after.  This happened several times until I finally allowed myself to slide to the Dark Side slightly.
This time we were standing near the Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie replica’s getting ready to take a photo, when she shoved past me again, standing to my right to take a photo.  Now, keep in mind, I’m travelling and have a backpack on my shoulder, incidentally, also on my right side.
I took a deep breath, bit my tongue, and then she shoved me again.  This time I saw red, and asked Mark (on my left) to move out of the way, and said, with none to subtle glee and evil intent in my voice “Watch this”, waited for her to frame her shot, focus her camera, then lined her up with my backpack, waited a moment for her to be about to press the shutter button on her camera, then forcefully span to my left, smacking her quite thoroughly in the back, from the centre of her shoulder blades to the top of her head smack into the back of her own camera, sending her stumbling two steps forward into the display.  I even managed to smile and say “Sorry”.   Muwahahahaha!
Sometimes the world is a better place for a dose of “assisted karma”, I’m sure my account is clear for having kept the peace until then.  It must be pointed out at this time, that, that was the last time she shoved past me.  *laugh*

Unfortunately though, there were hundreds of other people waiting to push in where she’d been pushed out.  The exhibition itself is definitely worth seeing if you get a chance, the crowds are pretty heinous though, but at least now I can say I’ve seen it.

Next stop…

Piccadilly Circus, I’m not sure what I was expecting here, it certainly wasn’t a Circus, but it most definitely wasn’t a heavily lit up and bedazzled with glowing advertising major intersection.  But I saw it, photographed it, and moved on, it was kind of interesting though, from there we walked to the next destination…

Trafalgar Square, again, this wasn’t exactly what I expected either, however there was certainly more to look at than at the last destination.  Statues, plaques, and two fountains.  It was at these fountains that I stopped, reached into my pocket and pulled out a handful of coins.  Coins which I made wishes on before throwing them into the water.  A wish each for my family members.  Mum and Dad, my Nan, my sister Kate, and nephew/niece to be, her husband etc.  Oh, and a big old wish for a Snickers.  This craving just can’t be quelled.  *laugh*

Then it was back onto the streets to walk around to the London Eye.

On the way though we passed Parliament House, Downing Street where the English Prime Minister resides to our next well known stop;

Big Ben and Westminster Abby.  Let me start by saying WOW!  Although Big Ben isn’t quite as large as I’d somehow imagined, the experience of seeing it in person along with Westminster Abby was somewhat surreal.  After all, this is the country where my Mum and her side of the family were born, and since she emigrated to Australia as a child, I’m the first one back (aside from my Nan) ever for a visit.  The architecture, the emotion the overall atmosphere is just something I can’t describe, except to say that I really wish I could be experiencing alongside my Mum, as I know how much she yearns to come back and visit the place of her birth.  Hopefully that’s something her and Dad can do in the near future.

The London Eye, is quite possibly one of the largest Ferris Wheel’s in the world, and if I’m correct, and please don’t quote me as I’m typing this entry without an Internet connection so can’t verify my facts, it was erected for the turn of the Millenium.
The London Eye is situated near Westminster Abby and Big Ben, and takes approximately 30 minutes to complete a rotation.  Each capsule holds roughly 20 people, and gives you an almost 360 degree birds eye view of London and it’s surrounding areas.  We’ve plenty of photos of the experience as well.

At the end of the ride it was time to head back to the Hotel, but not before stopping to take some more photos of Big Ben, Westminster Abbey, and Parliament House.

A short train trip via the Underground to Earls Court and we were back at the hotel for a quick rest, before heading out again to the theatre to see Wicked the musical.

Wicked the musical, is an adaptation of the book; Wicked.  It’s essentially an alternative perspective to the fabled Wizard of Oz movie, from the perspective of the Wicked Witch of the West, who really isn’t a Witch, nor is she Wicked, she simply suffers from what is essentially bad PR.  I read the book a few months back and loved it.  The musical itself follows the book loosely, but it’s brilliant.  I’d definitely recommend it.  There were a few eye moistening songs in the score.

Well that’s it, another day up to date, and a couple more for me to catch up on.