Night Rider

Last night as I left work, it was pitch black. It was my first cycle home since the clocks went back, or should I say “black?”

It was a different world. With lights flashing and high visibilty jacket I took every precaution but certainly noticed the difference in drivers. 
Luckily I know all the potholes between Camden and Queens Park and my route is mostly back roads. Streetlights are a good thing but it’s a very different experience to cycling during the long summer evenings. 
Still, it wasn’t raining, that’s forecast for tomorrow!

Falling Backwards

Tonight the clocks go back and that’s it until March. Dark at 4pm and so winter begins. The only way to cope is hibernation.

As I’m not a tortoise, hibernation isn’t really an option (although I wonder if anyone would actually notice) I will have to choose denial although I’m not sure cycling in the dark will be  much fun. 

The only thing to do is start booking holidays for the spring. Roll on March!

Tile Restoration

A damp Saturday afternoon seemed like the ideal time to continue the tile restoration in the entry hall. There were some extremely stubborn areas of glue/dirt/Victorian shit but with sheer persistence and quite a lot of scrubbing, it started to come off.

Not quite there but looking much better than when we started. Now all we need to do is polish them up, oh and patch the holes near our front door!

Two Days in Madrid

Two days later, I’m exhausted and heading back to London. 

We sampled the delights of Madrid, from the largest Primark superstore to the Prado museum. We saw bonsais in the Botanical Gardens and Picasso’s Guernica at the Museo Reina Sophia. 
We discovered a fantastic food hall in an old theatre where we ate delicious tapas before doing competitive analysis of high street fashion. And along the way a large display of green bottles put my collection to shame. 

Despite a long day, we soldiered on and ate dinner at a traditional fish and seafood restaurant where the oldest people of Madrid seemed to be regulars. We arrived first and left last having tried a variety of dishes. 
And finally, having eaten a lot of Spanish omelette which is very delicious but with hardly a vegetable in sight, it was a relief to sit down and relax on the flight home. I’m not sure how I’ll cope with Tokyo for a week.  
And so three weeks before I go to Tokyo. A lingering cold and now the unwelcome return of kennel cough. Hopefully it won’t stay long. 

What are the chances?

What a strange coincidence that an old friend from LA, whom I hadn’t seen for fifteen years, who lives in Toronto happened to be in Madrid at the same time as me. What are the chances?

How lucky that we were able to meet for half an hour for a coffee and the quickest catchup ever. 
Life is a strange thing. Fifteen years and so many experiences; marriages, children, work and just life in general. 
How nice to be able to meet in a foreign city and share memories and stories.  

Photos from Madrid

I’m very taken with Madrid. It’s clean, stylish and so far, the food is delicious!

My Mexican Spanish is slowly returning and overall I’m really quite impressed. 
Coupled with a temperate climate and late sunshine, I’m off to a good start!
The architecture is ornate and very beautiful although I’m not entirely sure about the Refugees Welcome sign. Detracts from the grandour slightly!