Ehrrrmagod, this last week in London has been intense. I’d planned to chill and get some work done. Neither of that happened.
The intensity of London, wanting to see friends and make the most of any opportunity that came my way seeing as it’s so rare I’m here meant there was only 1 evening out of 8 that I didn’t go out.
I kind of took an unintentional break from photography this week, so excuse the dodgy iPhone pics.
– Me at Heathrow before I got my bag with my trainers in, yeah, they’re avocado socks
I landed into Heathrow from Minneapolis a little after midday and headed straight to my Airbnb in Brixton Hill. Flying is weird isn’t it? One minute you’re in one part of the world and the next, a totally different country. Anyway, after a red eye with barely any shuteye, not like me, I needed a nap before the evening fun began.
Obviously I overslept. So the time scheduled for work and washing clothes went out the window and I just got my hair cut instead. I had to buy a whole new outfit to look at least a little presentable for the evening. Which took absolutely bloody ages, never go to Morley’s Department Store in Brixton when you’re in a rush.
I went to a Wexas Travel event at Barrio East. So many great bloggers, I felt overwhelmed, especially thanks to the fact I was an hour late. We learnt to make cocktails, chatted to the guys there, and just generally had a brilliant night. And then I went for a totally unneccessary bottle of wine after with Hayley from alifeofmore.co.uk and Simon from simonsjamjar.com. Love those guys.
– Random gathering by the Bowie mural in Brixton
I’m working on a cool project at SONAR in Barcelona so I met with the PR lady for that. Got on the tube at Brixton, sunnies on, all good, got out at Oxford Circus and it was absolutely pissing it down with rain. I was drenched within seconds and totally dressed for the sunshine. So despite the new hair cut and time spent pruning myself, I was a drowned rat by the time I got to our meeting at the Soho Grind coffee shop. All good though, she was lovely and we had fun.
Then I met up with a lovely PR at the Hoxton Hotel. Such a cool work space, and she was great too. She’s a trained video maker and journalist so we had a good old chat about that too.
That night was the Blogosphere Magazine cover reveal party, which was a lot of fun. I got chatting to Victoria from Premier Estates Alcohol, tried my first cronut and learnt that Fentiman’s now do pre mixed gin and tonics. Successful night already right?
Well I also met some awesome bloggers, new to me, met the editor Alice and I’m now the travel editor for the next edition. Getting back to my magazine roots!
This was the day I officially became Professor FlipFlop, kinda. I gave two lectures at the Arcadia University on how to write a travel blog and then how to promote it. I haven’t really done much public speaking but ended up totally enjoying it and the great feedback from the students means they want me to come back again.
I felt drained after! It was almost three hours in all. Especially after the jet lag catching up with me the previous last night – I was awake from 2am till 6am, wasn’t happy.
I tried to work at the Hoxton Hotel again and despite having a prime spot I just wasn’t feeling it. Paid for the overpriced drink and walked the five miles home instead. London was looking ber-utiful in the sunshine.
Cue a night in on the laptop. Needed.
After a few hours of work in the morning I went to meet my PR friend, again to discuss working together. We talked snapchat, blogging, bloggers and holidays over a yummy avocado toast. Could’ve stayed all afternoon but I had another meeting to get to. This time with a cool accommodation start up.
And then it was time to party with my favourite travel bloggers I’d missed while I was away. If anyone saw my snapchat over the weekend you’ll know I took this a little far. Singing all over the streets of London and managing to find a life size cut out of the Queen to bring around with us. It was a fun 12 hours starting at the Southbank, and ending at 4am at McDonalds in Brixton #stayclassy.
Oo the next day I was feeling rough. My long awaited bacon sandwich made me feel better. I’ve been craving those guys while I was away.
I went to see Fiona, one of my really good friends at her lovely house in Teddington. I had to hide how rough I was feeling as we’d been looking forward to our playdate for ages. She works for Good Food magazine and is an amazing cook. She made me the cornflake brioche eggy bread above, served with champagne bellinis. Epic.
I met her new little kitty cats and we went to walk down by the river. I couldn’t believe I’d never been down there before, especially as it was just down the road from where I used to work at X Factor Magazine.
After a few ciders at the pub we went to Brixton for an incredible pulled pork burger at The Joint in Brixton Market. The market is so cool and there are so many good places to eat, when I come back I’m going to go everywhere and eat everything and review it all. Love it in there!
Had a good morning for work today and then I went to meet my school friend Mel. Went to Dishoom. Little did I know there are two Dishooms in London, I was at Leicester Square and she was at Kings Cross. Totally my fault in not paying attention to instructions.
Anyway I trekked back again and we had a yummy lunch. We’re going to Wilderness Festival together in August so we were busy planning that.
And then I had to leave to get to Jen’s birthday, which I didn’t realise it was her birthday. Ooops. We drank Veuve Clicquot, well, one bottle from her generous friend and a few proseccos at the Tatershall Castle, which is a boat on the River Thames by the London Eye. It rained, the the sun shone, then it rained, but it was all fun. I just love sitting outside in London, with ma fwends.
I got home way later than expected but did actually manage to do quite a bit of work. Until really, really late.
Such an unproductive day. Day time blogging just wasn’t doing it for me.
I met my PR friend at The Wild Food Cafe near Covent Garden for lunch. I don’t know if it’s just because I’m only noticing it now I’m more interested in it, or if they’ve been there all along but there are so many vegan and vegetarian restaurants in London now. This place was well busy and very yum.
I popped in a few shops after, but nothing. And then a journey that was meant to be 30 minutes ended up being two hours thanks to cancelled trains. Definitely wasn’t feeling London today, rain and all.
I met my friend for a quick drink in Brixton and then I went home, got in bed and made some good headway with the work that has been building up daily. Working on a 28,000-word project for a client. Yikes.
– photo from my walk in Teddington, barely took any last week!
Last day in London and I spent it working away in my AirBnB room, before heading into Central London. Had a little look round the Monki shop that I’d spotted had popped up on Carnaby Street, managed to pick up a dress, shirt and shoes for my Barcelona trip.
And then I went to another PR meeting, followed by an awesome travel writer event at Shackfuyu Japanese restaurant and then an event celebrating all things Caribbean at the fancy Sandals store in South Kensington. Had to Uber it home, worn out.
One of the best things about these events is the opportunity to see travel bloggers and people you’ve been on trips with before, and to see new, cool places in London. I love a good event, nothing to do with the free drinks of course.
I had a brilliant week in London, in among all the boozin and schmoozin I also wrote a few articles for the blog, went through 5 billion emails that were backed up and managed to get through some client work too.