“Change is coming!” – me.
For 8 months, I’ve pretty religiously started every blog post with a quote. It started innocently enough; I would just find these quotes that seemed to speak to me about what I was doing or what was on my mind… but here I am 8 months in, finding that I cringe a little as I think I *have* to find the perfect quote for my post! The pressure! And then I realized that -silly me- this is MY blog. Its purpose is to document this overseas adventure for myself and to share it with the people who love me and want to know what I’m up to, and any other people who happen upon my blog and decide to keep reading (I’m much of a top-10 or travel tips kind of a girl so thanks for continuing to come around!). Anyways, really, I’m writing for me. So if it doesn’t fit anymore, why do it? I’ll include a quote if it finds me and screams “I belong in this post!” but otherwise, please don’t be sad if my posts are quoteless. Just thought I’d lay it out so you’re not shocked and disappointed next time. And now that’s out of the way; on with the show!
Hemingford Abbots, St Ives and Cambridge
Family is unsurprisingly a running theme on my blog- travel through Europe is pure adventure, but inevitably every trip within the UK connects me with my roots, directly or indirectly. It might be because I have roughly ten thousand relatives in the UK (or about 100.. but honestly, the more I learn about my family tree the closer we get to that 10 000 mark). Which makes the first weekend of the month, spent with my cousin and her sweetie (and their very lovable dog, Diesel), the perfect place to start blogging for February.
T and I headed out on the train with Caz from London after work on Friday and went for dinner at their local pub. Caz and Alex live in Hemingford Abbots, a lovely village (population 635ish) near Cambridgeshire. Their cottage is everything quaint and wonderful that you imagine in a small English village, which includes a teeny tiny library, housed in a classic red phone booth shell. We stopped there for some book perusal and silliness before heading back to the house for drinks and more visiting.
Caz and I have spent years chatting on Facebook and getting to know each other, despite only having met once when we were little girls and she and her brother, with my Aunt and Uncle, came to visit us in Canada. Getting to spend time with her in person and meeting this amazing guy who is making her happy was pretty fantastic.
We felt right at home and had a restful sleep before heading into St. Ives for brunch in the morning. It wasn’t running the day we were there, but St Ives has market day which looks pretty fun. I know, I know: the pictures in that link look like they’re from the 90s, but maybe that’s strategic since any suggestion of bleached denim, crop tops and rolled jeans would probably really appeal to the hipsters 😉
We ate at Little Acre Kitchen: an independent spot that makes quality homemade food with a wide range of gluten and dairy free options (yay!) which made it a super stress-free eating out experience (not always the case for me). Who knew brunch could be such fun? We were so involved in our game of Trivial Pursuit that we extended our parking time and ordered a second round of beverages! Then, we spent a bit of time wandering around Cambridge, had a light afternoon snack, and it was off to the train and back to London. Thanks Caz and Alex for hosting us! xo
Back in London…
I’ll skip ahead a little (and give Amsterdam its own posts). While we’re on the theme of family we can include friends too! When I returned from Amsterdam mid-month, one of our dear friends had arrived in London from France! He and his fiancée Estelle lived and worked in Vancouver, which is where we all met. Arnaud and T work together and the four of us share a love of food which started a fast friendship. When A & E’s work visas ran out in Vancouver, they embarked on an incredible roadtrip before returning to France and so we hadn’t seen them in about 8 months.
E wasn’t here yet, but we invited A for an early Sunday dinner and then we went to stock up on some of our favourites from Borough Market. Surprisingly warm February weather meant we could enjoy our fare in the back garden. Yay! A brought exquisite French wine and saucisson, and we prepared some olives, cheese, vegetables and treats to go with. We had a good laugh because A arrived with this great quality wine and we had no wine glasses at the time! Thankfully, one of our neighbours let us borrow a few for the afternoon. Needless to say we bought proper wine glasses the next time we were out. Oops!
And as if February wasn’t already wonderful- the flowers also started to make an appearance, and I spent my half-term break in Amsterdam! But that’s a story for another day. xo