Wednesday, 29 March 2017

Colour me beautiful

My story on this lovely Welly reno is in the April issue of Your Home & Garden Magazine (click here to read).

Monday, 27 March 2017

Is there a doctor in the house?

My profile of New Zealand's 'First Lady', Dr Mary English, is one of two stories I have in the April issue of NEXT Magazine (click here to read).


Sunday, 26 March 2017

Lovely London

I once spent almost five years living in the English capital, easily one of the best times of my life. I've returned many times since and although London has chiseled a special place in my heart, I'm not sure I'd want to live there now (different age and stage, mainly).

Plus, we missed the terrorist attack last Wednesday by mere hours; it's a scary world we live in which makes me even more thankful for quiet wee Aotearoa.

But we had fun in London, from a night at the West End show Dreamgirls, and a BritMovie tour of Sherlock and Harry Potter filming locations to a visit to the National Portrait Gallery, the V&A and the brand, spanking new Design Museum. I even managed to squeeze in a bit of shopping and a quick coffee with my old BBC mate, Kurt (no visit to London is complete without seeing him).

It was a jam-packed three night visit but, as always, London delivered the goods.


Saturday, 25 March 2017


Thanks to the God of Media Tickets, we are going to the RNZB's acclaimed performance of Carmen tonight at the St James Theatre.

I'm still fighting jet lag but am sure a bunch of beautiful lithe young things in lycra flinging themselves across the stage will wake me up!


(Pic credit: Ross Brown/RNZB)

Friday, 24 March 2017

Harry Potter

I can't put my hand on my quivering heart and say I'm the world's biggest Harry Potter fan but a few days ago, on the way from Bristol to London, we swung by the Warner Brothers Harry Potter studio near Watford.

This is where the eight films in the wildly successful franchise were filmed and despite not being one of those who dressed up in a cape, tie and glasses to do the tour, it was a lot of fun. And it has inspired me to watch the seven films I haven't seen (should I ever have the time).



Monday, 20 March 2017

Beautiful Bath

It was an early start yesterday to catch the train to Bath, the UNESCO World Heritage site famed for its gob-smacking Roman spa and elegant Georgian architecture.

I've been here many, many times, including taking Kiwi visitors when we lived in Bristol, but  this city never gets old.

Apologies, the following photos don't do the city justice - but  I forgot the correct cord thingy for my camera so these pics from my phone will have to suffice.

Meanwhile, back in Bristol I found this wee gem in a backstreet in my old neighbourhood.

And snapped these glorious daffs in full bloom.

And, of course, I had to find our old flat and take a sneaky photo in front of it. I'm so, so glad we don't live in that hovel anymore!

Saturday, 18 March 2017

More Bristol

There is too much to see and do and too little time to do it in but here for your viewing pleasure are some pics of today's activities in Brizzle.

There was a walking tour of the city centre and a visit to the stunning Bristol Cathedral, which I walked past twice a day for 18 months but never ventured inside. I wish I had because this sandstone building, built in 1140, is nothing short of gob-smacking.

Later there was a visit to the SS Great Britain, the Clifton Suspension Bridge and a wander around Clifton, where I used to live.

Another fantastic day which has given me oodles to write about when I get home.

Friday, 17 March 2017

Back in Bristol

I lived in Britain's seventh most populous city for 18 months back in 2010/11 and returned at the tail end of a media trip a couple of years ago.

Today, after our marathon flights, we were back in Brizzle.

And we were straight into it, with breakfast at the Glassboat (scene of a work lunch back in the day), a street art walking tour with Where the Wall and a catch-up with one of my Bristol BFFs, the lovely Anita. Am exhausted and fighting sleep but a fantabulous first day.

Tuesday, 14 March 2017

A travel marathon

Tomorrow I fly to Auckland and a few hours later, three journos and a PR fly to Doha (at 17.5 hours, currently the world's longest duration flight), where we spend another three hours, and then another five or six hours onto Heathrow. And then a two-hour bus ride to Bristol.

My frazzled wee brain can't even begin to compute how many hours of continual forward motion that is. At least we have managed to wangle seats in business class (thanks @Qatar Airways ).

There's barely time for a quick shower, before we hit the ground running in Bristol, with a full day of activities.I have arranged to meet one of Bristol besties, Anita, that night and much has happened since I last saw her a couple of years ago, so I will no doubt be employing clothes pegs to make my eyes stay open.

As always, I will miss my two boys terribly, especially the four-legged one.

See you on the other side.

Sunday, 12 March 2017

Christchurch Changes

My travel piece on Christchurch is published in the NZ Woman's Weekly this week (click here to read).

Photos by the ever talented Animator.



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