English beat that is London

Aha! It so happened that I had an entire day free ahead of me before my flight from Heathrow at 915pm. A Sunday at that. And in London, not a very favourite city with me because of the weather which is so extreme or dreary

Faced with 2 choices – laze around in the hotel, paying minimal extra for late check out. Or make the most of the day by being outdoors and enjoying London. Of course I chose the later. It was a glorious sunny day, bright and cheerful, light fluffy clouds flitted lightly and the world beckoned.

I had a light breakfast of fruit and cereal, and decided in my mind that while I am going to spend time here in the city it will be haute and not massy. So, Tita picked me from the hotel at 10am, my baggage was nicely locked in the boot of her car, and we were now hands free, baggage free.

Tita’s surprise for me was the appointment she had taken in advance, she knew the marketing head of this fantastic spa in Mandarin Hotel, Hyde Park, so we headed straight for a snappy consultation and I was ready for the Life-dance routine that the spa offered.

Jane, the therapist assigned to me, informed me that the Life-dance ritual was based on Ayurveda but was modified to get the most out of one session. I confessed to overwork and exhaustion and sound sleep and was led to this heavenly smelling room which was obviously made with Rip Van Winkle in mind. The soothing colours, the fragrant candles, the gentle lamp lights and the soft bed with flowers strewn all around made me sleepy instantly. A combine of hot stones and soothing milk cleansers massaged with gentle strokes did me in for the next couple of hours. I was asleep for over two hours and when I finally surfaced they got me invigorating honey blended coconut water with mint, refreshing!

One of the nicest things of wrapping up at the Mandarin was being right in the middle of the shopping district. The sales were on, Jimmy Choos caught my fancy so I strolled in looking for something simple and stunning, but did not get my feet size. All sizes surprisingly were for large feet. So along the road was Harrods, where we made our next stop and here I bought a couple of beautiful gifts for family and a lovely red tote for Tita who was happy with my thank you We walked out armed with bags in tow, and headed in to Gerard Darrel for a beautiful cream silver trench, my favourite piece from this trip.

We then headed to a café and slurped my way through a lovely soup and salad and a huge gelato sundae, and then walked a mile to shed it off. Having rested and having consumed high energy stuff, the day came to a close and we made our way to Heathrow I felt a twinge of sadness (UK is not my favourite destination) for a beautiful day had come to a close. Purse and heart lighter, I stepped into my flight, watched a movie, ate some short eats and slipped into my i-pod dreaming of home and my own bed on landing:)


Bon Apetit in China

I thought being a vegetarian, this country - China, was not my cup of tea. So am putting what I saw there, to test with you guys. Duck's tongue. Pregnant frogs eggs. Snakes. Imagine any bird, animal, sea fish... and you have it on the table!! I was part of many sit down dinners and I know I looked bad not touching the food, not one morsel, but no wild horses could have made me either:( - the chef would feel bad and not understand why I wasn't eating, but I couldn't:( , all I know is in the 3 odd weeks I was there I survived- barely - on cheese, some breads and ice creams. And I was so missing home. If ever I go back to China I am carrying a truckload of food with me and I don't care what people say!