Monday, 10 October 2011

Currently on TV...

BBC Two,: Mixed Brittania.

All round nice guy George Alagiah plays chief detective into discovering the history of mixed race relationships and families in the UK. The programme's focus struck a personal chord with him, as he himself is a man of Sri Lankan descent married with children to a white British woman. The programme itself was littered with interesting facts of our country's past and how mixed relations are nothing new. Though revealing, I thought it could have been edited shorter but that may just be down to my short attention span and the fact that I had to watch it streamed on a small netbook screen.

This programme struck a smaller chord with me and inspired me to write an off topic post. The results of the Second World War dramatically changed British society, with its disastarous aftermath leaving the country in need of being built again. It was at this time when both sides of my family arrived by boat from the Caribbean islands to take up one of the thousands of public sector jobs available in England. My grandma Pearl McGown was one of them. She is of half Chinese-half Jamaican descent and came to England, like many, leaving family, including her children behind.

I have a lot of admiration for this generation. They left everything to have a future in a distant country and went through a lot of difficulties to overcome it all and stay there. Yet, I have never met a group of people who could laugh so much, be so kind and also be able to neck a glass of white rum in their eighties. They appreciate good spirit in all forms. Sadly, this generation are old now and I'll miss them when they go. My grandparents think I'm crazy to have moved to Spain forgetting how they sailed to England by boat, (Pearl's cousin died on a boat trip to China, I just fail to see how me staying in Spain surprises her so much).

My dad, rocking dungarees.

I'll miss the way that generation are so smartly dressed and how they refer to each other as Mr. and Ms. For example on my mother's side they would always be called Mr. Riley and Ms Riley and on my father's Mr.Mc and Ms.Mc by everyone, even to each other, which is confusing as I didn't know my dad's, dad's real name for years (his name is Howard). They are truly great people whose lasting present to me, was to give me a great start in life. Thank you. I really wish to tell their story in the future one day.

Connie and Leslie Hoe from the programme. Of mixed race Chinese descent. She looks like my grandma! She only lives down the road, maybe I can adopt her as one?

Back to Seville

Its that time of year again and I've flown back to the Iberian peninsula to start work again. This year I'm living in the apartment of an artist which is quite nice and very well kept. I must take a picture to support that statement :)

Myself and a friend decided to spend one of the last opportunities the weather would permit to visit one of the many beaches of the Costa de la Luz. What a glorious, clean and unspoilt coastline this is. Its hard to believe that its next door neighbour is the infamous Costa del Sol.

There are many nice beaches along this coastline. El Palmar, Los Canos de Meca, Zahara de los Atunes and Tarifa to name a few. We went to one of the many pueblos blancos here called Conil.

Very pretty.

Anais trekking to the beach

Tuesday, 30 August 2011


Just a short post to say, "wooo, carnival!"

For many, its a celebration of colour and cultures that are vibrant within London. For me, its just a chance to search for the West Indian food stalls. Curry goat? Patty? Coconut water? Ackee&Saltfish? Sugar cane? Roti? Nom. Nom. Nom.

Funky house anyone?

I also randomly met a friend from Seville whilst there. This world is so very, very small.

Fika. Fika. Fika.

For three days only, Sweden was in Soho. The tourist company Visit Sweden has decided that enough is enough and it’s about time more English faces were on their soil. So, what better way to entice the English than a familiar spot of TEA! But no ordinary tea, no. This is Fika the Swedish equivalent of high tea or afternoon tea. I am partial to copious amounts of tea myself so I decided to drag my friend Angie from Oxelösund to point out things my naive English eyes would otherwise neglect.

Its August. Winter has started. Time for fika.

Seeing as this event was very successful we were unable to prebook a table, however, towards the end, the team came over with biscuits in tow and asked for a picture too.

Visit Sweden Team

Skåne was the location of choice, the southernmost region of Sweden.  It is a place of natural beauty and has its own sandy beaches. It’s so beautiful that every year people gather in one of the main towns and attempt to dig the area back to Denmark. Jokes aside, I was sold on the many cookies that the event had such as havrekakor and especially drömmar (Swedish for ‘dream’) which tasted just like shortbread. Here I come, Skåne!

I am holding drömmar. Keeping it safe :)

The event came with an unusual piece from Emma Karp Lundström, depicting her life in Skåne through many red and green apples. Yum!

Angie showing us the Apples
After the fun we had pretending to be in Sweden, myself and Angie went shopping. We popped into the Make Up Store a Swedish company selling absolutely gorgeous make-up. Not too dissimilar a price to MAC. I felt like I was in a paint shop with the amount of colours that they had. Beautiful!

Located on Carnaby Street. This store truly is a feast for the eyes.

I would love to learn Swedish. If I can do Spanish, French and a bit of Arabic too. Ohh the possibilities!

Puss, puss alla!

Fancy Sverige? Have a look. 

Love me... not.

Strange that I should choose such a topic to open this blog but all endings lead to new beginnings and I’d like to think that there is an ending out there (one I haven’t yet thought of), that has led to the beginning of this blog.

The Museum of Broken Relationships. A depressing title given to a temporary exhibition that has been brought to us from Zagreb, Croatia to the streets of the seven dials in London. Each exhibit within comprises of an object donated by members of the public, accompanied with a short description retelling a past love that is no more. Some stories run with strong emotion still seethingly apparent, others are comedic and reflective.

White Dress Shoes

There is a sense of familiarity between stories from different people in different countries. There is a sad story of a woman had been lied to by a man who had appeared to be the love of her life but in truth had another family. Another man had fallen for a nurse, but had decided that his donated prosthetic limb was studier than their love.

One of the more "creepy love" donations. A man had collected many a picture with the word Color/Colour which apparently sounds like "Carla"

My favourite story was of a second anniversary gift entitled “The Stupid Frisbee” donated by a woman from Belgrade. Her comedic description of the lurid blue frisbee encompassed her dream of smacking her ex in the head with it. She loving signed off her donation with; P.S. Darling, should you ever get a ridiculous idea to walk into a cultural institution like a museum for the first time in your life, you will remember me. At least have a good laugh (the only thing that you could do on your own). Ouch!

The exhibition is in two buildings. One on Earlham Street, the other Tower Street.

A space for you to write your opinions

A very interesting exhibit and worth a visit should you ever be in the area. From now till the 4th September 2011.

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