It has been a while since I have posted on T&TOCG, and the reason is that I have started something new. A new blog that is dedicated to my inspirations and musings on fashion and style. Basically, where this blog was right at the very beginning and which was lost along the way.

If you feel like following along, you can find me here.

Vicblack

Almost 7 months ago I made the huge step of packing up my life and moving across the world. It was a big move but one I don’t regret taking. It has certainly been an adventure, up days and down and I’ve come to learn that I really am not a winter girl after all. Yes maybe for a week here or there in the snow flying down a mountain with my feet strapped to a board, or whilst sitting in a cozy pub having a roast lunch and a glass of red wine but every day ice cold winds, freezing temperatures and grey skies? Hell no, bring me spring!

It’s strange how much weather can influence how you feel. Lately, I haven’t felt myself. The bright bubbly confident person I know that’s inside seems to have hibernated for the winter. Of course, having a cold that has lasted for a month doesn’t help. So I asked people I know who have come from sunny climes…. how on earth can I get myself out of this funk? And the suggestions were endless, book holidays, get a sunlamp, embrace it, vitamin D, hot chocolate, multi-vitamins, wear colour…. but the resounding suggestion was “do more of what makes you happy”. So that is what I’m going to focus on, making sure that I’m doing things I want to do, and what better way to start, than to embrace the location of this fine city by planning a 30th birthday trip to Spain for some much needed sunshine.

Vicblack

It’s been a while since I last posted on here. Life just happened to get in the way and with settling into a new city, working hard at a new job and discovering places, people and myself, there just didn’t seem to be the time to devote to writing and blogging as I would have liked.

But I missed it terribly. The freedom to be creative, to share and to be inspired got lost and I lost a part of myself that I had cherished since I had discovered the joys of blogging a few years ago. So, with a new year already one month down and taking stock of all the things important to me, I’m back. And hopefully better than ever.  

 

dahlias

Vicblack

Today has been the perfect Sunday. A sleep in, then a walk through the most beautiful park. Hamstead Heath, while only minutes from the center of London feels as far away as a jaunt in the country. The air was fresh, there were dogs barking and golden leaves falling from the trees. Even an hour of walking was just what the doctor ordered.

Lunch followed the “country” theme and S and I found a delightful pub in which to order a feast. The moment we walked in the door and stumbled across a little dog sitting patiently for its master to finish their lunch we knew we were onto a god thing. After ordering a glass of red and tucking into a delicious slice of roast beef with all the trimmings (Nana J would be so proud) it was time to meander back to the train station.

Just walking through the little side streets and seeing the beautiful big houses was enough to convince me that Hamstead is a place I’ll be wanting to come back to, very soon. And the good thing is, it’s just a train ride away.

Living in London has been a complete and utter adventure. Its strange to think, that only a couple of weeks ago I was feeling mighty homesick and yet now, I forget Im even here. Last night, whilst on my way to meet S at the Savoy (yes, The Savoy!) I was walking across Waterloo Bridge minding my own business, when I stopped, turned around and saw the most amazing, sight. There, right in front of me, framed by storm clouds, was The London Eye, Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament. It took my breath away. Here I was standing in a city I had only ever dreamed about visiting. I had actually done it. I’d made the move and here I was.

It’s nice to feel comfortable at where my life is for a change. It’s starting to feel right. Yes, there are a few things still needing to be sorted out, like feeling comfortable in a flat that whilst gorgeous, isn’t really home and I don’t think will ever be “home” and getting a doctor/physio/dentist etc. These things will all come in time and if the flat doesn’t work out, well that’s ok too – hey I might even save some money.

Anyway, here is my life in pictures over the last couple of weeks:

The thing I didn’t really want to happen, has happened. It took its time, but here it is, casting a grey cloud over my day (although that could actually just be the weather). Homesickness has made itself known and I don’t like it. I’m craving salt air and a place I haven’t called home in 6 years. Even images of the Australian outback are causing me grief and If you know me, that does’t quite compute. Me + dust + super hot days does not equal a happy Victoria. So Im finding all this very strange. But I have been told that these weeks (4 and 5) are the hardest but that I’ll get there. So Im throwing myself into work, and into my favourite things (like taking long walks, being a tourist and fashion).

Yup, its also that time… Fashion week central! Currently New York is showing and I have become enamored with Ellery’s new collection (those shoes!) and A gorgeous, to-die-for gown by Jenny Packham. What Im most looking forward (and Im hoping it knocks the homesickness for six) is London Fashion Weekend. A day of parades, shopping and fun!

So here is to hoping that tomorrow, I wake up and the mental clouds aren’t hanging around. Homesickness can go jump in a lake.

Image from Russh Magazine

Wow, what a whirlwind the last month has been. I arrived in London just over 4 weeks ago, saw Liz at Buckingham Palace, got lost (many times) sampled coffee after coffee to try find a good one and visited Oxford Street. Then I jetted off on whistle stop tour of Paris, Switzerland, Italy, Austria, and Amsterdam. And my goodness it was an adventure.

I met so many wonderful people on the tour, some I think that will stay friends for a long time to come. I challenged myself (went paragliding!) and fell in love twice (with the Swiss Alps and Venice). I cant wait to visit Switzerland in winter.

Then it was back to London, to interviews and to find a flat before heading off to Ireland! Ireland was so gorgeous, so lush and green. I’ll most certainly be back.

All in all, it has been a great ride. Yes there have been some ups and downs, but I have tackled the down head on and just let the ups run its course.

Month one complete – bring on month two!

London day 4 & 5. Ok, so the promise to myself about blogging my adventures everyday has hit a bit of a curve ball. Namely because Im way too tired to boot up my computer after a long day of exploring.

The last few days have been wonderful. From watching the Olympic woman’s road race with S and just walking around the city, I have found so many things I hadn’t expected. I think that I will be in awe of this city for many weeks (if not months and years) to come.

Yesterday I just kept walking, a different direction than what I know (yes I kept away from Oxford street) and found myself walking up alley ways and stumbling across the Stella McCartney store in Mayfair. One day, I’ll buy something from the shop, just to say I did.

I walked past Saville Row whilst wearing Haviannas and looking like a complete tourist, past Horseguards Parade where the Olympic Beach Volley ball was being played and unfortunately, no Prince Harry (he was rumored to be in attendance), past a leafy park, the London Eye and there it was… Big Ben. Probably the most iconic of all British landmarks. And I was standing right in front of him. AHHHH a dream come true.

It’s moments like this that make me want to pinch myself. I can’t believe Im here!!

London, day three. Harrods, what can I say. Glorious department store, just really not me. Dark, gloomy and too many people trying to get me to try on perfume – even when I said no. Selfridges? Well that’s a lot better.

After a walk through Hyde Park, I found myself back on Oxford Street. Right in front of Topshop. Again. I think this might be the start of a delightful friendship. Not just with Topshop (I’m a friendly girl) but with all the retailers along that strip.

And there the day went. After getting my nails done, I walked around with no real clear destination, just with the aim to “get lost” and lost I got. But what I found, I’d be happy with for the rest of my life…. Carnaby Street and Liberty’s. Here I was, In front of a shop that I had only read about. Yes seen the fabric but never actually expected it to be as awesome as it actually was. 30 minutes later, out I walked with a purple bag and my wallet just that little bit lighter.

And here I am, after a delightful day out amoungst the hustle and bustle of a lively city, a cocktail is in my hand, writing this from the bar of my hotel. Now, if only a young gentleman would pop my way to say hello the day couldn’t get much better.

London, day two. Jet lag, the naughty beast allowed me only 4 hours sleep. 4 hours I wish were doubled. But I was determined to get the most out of the day. My first full day in this glorious city. Plus, the Olympics were to start!

Up I hopped, the sun was shining and I was off to see the Queen. Well Buckingham Palace at least. I can’t tell you how amazing the day was, walking pathways that were built over a hundred years ago, by parks where the grass was let to grow and deck chairs were scattered where the sun decided to land. It was mesmerising.

I arrived at the Palace just in time to see the changing of the guards. Along with the hordes of other people, I played the tourist, took the obligatory photographs then continued on my way (not without waving to Her Majesty – who I’m sure was peeking out from behind the curtain).

Up the road, I marveled at almost everything I saw feeling just like a little child on Christmas day. I guess It really was Christmas day for me, what with wanting to do this trip for so long. And then I looked up… and there was Big Ben. He took me completely by surprise. And he was as majestic as I thought he would be.

And I just kept on walking, stumbling into Nelsons Column in Trafalga Square, to the bright lights of Picadilly Circus then straight into Topshop and H&M. Of course, a day out in London, wouldn’t be complete without a few little purchases (namely a pair of shoes and an entirely new outfit). What was I supposed to do? I hadn’t been shopping for a whole 6 months! Finally I felt like myself again.

Bags in hand, I headed back to the glorious York & Albany hotel where I was staying for a few nights to freshen up before heading back out to a cute little pub with S to watch the Olympic Opening Ceremony over a few ciders and laughs.

By the time that my head hit the deliciously soft pillow I was out like a light and Jet Lag had walked out of my life with only the memories.

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