London 2019 - Covent Garden

Something colourful to start with this last blog entry on London this year.
Our hotel is so nicely placed out of the centre, yet so close to get to
our favourite haunts, like Covent Garden.

I like to visit Neale's Yard and especially this lovely place to stock up on some
natural oils and creams.

There are many decorated pubs with fabulous hanging baskets of flowers.

Looking up!

There's always some kind of animation going on in Covent Garden
the fascinated crowds are drawn in to watch.

This is the covered area with small shops and places to eat and drink and free concerts.

Hanging baskets adorn the streets

One building is cleverly decorated in climbing plants

A classical building in a street called
King Street.

One of our favourite stops: Paul's boulangerie and patisserie.
They serve good coffee and different kinds of French bread
and some of the cakes and tarts are very tempting.
Our favourite is apple tart topped with a sprinkling of almond flakes.

We took quite a long walk on foot to visit the Museum of London
and I did enjoy the lovely reflections in the modern buildings on the way.

We passed these two men practicing their climbing skills on a high building.
Rather an unexpected scene to see!

One evening we went to the theatre to see the musical "The Phantom of the Opera"
with wonderful music by Andrew Lloyd Webber.

When you visit London, going to the theatre is a must!

I love walking through the small gardens dotted around London
and seeing the colourful seasonal flowers in bloom.

Two girls chatting in the grass behind some flowers which served to protect
their privacy.

The window in my hotel room. I always appreciate being on the garden side of the building
This was taken early morning after the sun started to filter between the leaves
of the trees and the morning breeze blew the sheer curtains back and forth, 
creating a feeling of peace.

This is the end of my time in England this year.

Next time, I'll talk about the month of August in which I participated in
30 Days of Composition.
Such fun to do!

Snippets from London 2019

A stay in London is always very special.
There are favourite haunts to visit and new ones to discover.
We always stay in the Bloomsbury area near Russell Square.
It's quiet and yet not far at all from the centre.

This lovely red door with polished chrome is in the street of  our hotel.

Nearby is the British Museum
full of interesting things to see.

like this marvellous ship which is actually an animated clock
which was put on banquet tables as a decoration.

This is the style of the Bed and Breakfast Hotels in the area.
I've stayed in this one too.
I do love the colourful window boxes of flowers.

Sicilian Avenue is where we often have our main meal of the day
in an Italian restaurant with a good choice of the sort of food we like to eat.

On the other side of Russell Square Park
is the Kimpton Fitzroy Hotel

Very grand inside with lots of marble and beautiful mosaic work in the entrance.

To give you a better idea of the mosaic design.

We had delicious sherries here with my son when he joined us in London
for a couple of days.

Here is an image of Queen Victoria hanging in front of a shop selling collector's coins.
It's just opposite the British Museum.

I couldn't put up an image of Victoria without adding a statue of her husband,
Prince Albert.

A red, sight-seeing double-decker bus.

Another bus and a taxi near the restaurant we go to.
The taxis are no longer only black now.
Many of them are coloured, either plain or with designs and even advertisements.

Since most people use mobile phones these days, 
the well-known red telephone booths are being recycled.
This one offers on the spot smart phone repairs!

There's even an Insect Hotel in the nearby park.
I love that!

I'll stop here for today with some of the photos I took in London, but I shall continue with a few more very soon!

The Cotswolds, England 2019

The heat this summer has discouraged me from doing frequent blog entries,
but now it's time to talk about my holiday in England.
I hadn't been back for three years and I was beginning to miss the unique atmosphere
of my home country!

The first part of my trip took me to the beautiful Cotswolds.
This is the area where my dad grew up with his parents and sister.
It is well-known for its rolling green hills and hedgerows
and houses and walls built in the beautiful honey-coloured Cotswold Stone.

I do love coloured front doors and was immediately attracted to this blue one in the photo above. 

Five-bar gates is another favourite
They're so welcoming as we look beyond them into gardens or fields.

I can't visit the Cotswolds without going to the village (though I believe they like
to call it a town these days) of Charlbury.
This is where my dad lived with his family and where he and his parents are buried.
I always take some flowers when I visit them.

Here is the familiar entrance to the lovely cemetery.
You can see a typical dry stone wall too.

Such a peaceful resting place with a view over green hills and grazing animals.

I think that I take a picture of this red postbox, set in the wall, every time I visit!
Behind the wall is the most beautiful garden in the village.

Full of roses and clematis and lavender and many other flowers.

The bees were very happy in this garden too.
The scent of the lavender was wonderful.
I even met the lady who lives here and complimented her on her wonderful garden!
She told me that she and her husband had retired here after working in London.

There are beautiful clematis in different colours against many of the houses.
This one is my favourite.

This one is my favourite.

We stayed in the small market town of Moreton-in-Marsh in the Evenlode Valley,
within the Cotswolds area in Gloucestershire.
The railway station on the Cotswold Line allows us to travel directly to London.
The journey takes about one hour and thirty minutes.

These colourful poppies were growing in the town.

We couldn't get to our favourite privately owned gardens opened to the public,
but you can see their beauty here:

I had got to know a fellow lady photographer through a photo site.
We decided to meet up in England where they live, not far from where we were staying.
Look at the fabulous view they have from their home!

The weather-vane on their garage

The view from the living-room
What a dream place to live!

There are a few neighbouring houses, but they are not too close.
You do however need a car to get anywhere for anything you may need.
No village shops within walking distance,
but perfect for daily walks in an idyllic setting!

We visited a church in the nearby town of Northleach

I did like the plain glass windows with a stained glass effect from the trees
and greenery outside.

I did like the decorated cushions, handmade using tapestry stitches. 
Each one in a different design.

Here is the entrance to the Gothic style church of Northleach.

Northleach is a market town in the valley of the River Leach
also in Gloucestershire.

Hollyhocks and Cotswold stonework
is what I love the most when I go to England.

If you would like to see more of Hollyhocks and Honey Coloured Houses,
you can read about a former visit by clicking on the title above.

Next time, I'll take you to London, for that was the second part of my holiday!

I hope that you are having a beautiful summer!