Monday, August 28, 2006

I love the night sky

Hi kids! I thought I would post a piccie that sums up summertime London for you all. It's bank holiday weekend here. Today was fine after we've had a lot of rain in the past week. Phil and I have just been blobbing round the house really though I did catch up with Cath yesterday. Currently Phil is watching Pearl Jam on TV live at the Reading/Leeds festivals. It's quite weird to see them as 'old men' on stage. They're not quite as decrepit as Mick and Keith though. Speaking of which, Phil and I went to see Pirates of the Caribbean 2 last weekend. I would recommend that you wait for it to come out on video. It's much like the Two Towers - filling the gap between the 1st and the 3rd movies. That said, there's plenty of Johnny eye-candy to be had in the movie, and Keira & Johnny's snog has a lot more passione in it that when she kisses Orlando! xx

The countdown is progressing...

South Island Place
Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
A gentle reminder of the pull of home... about a km from our flat in South London, Phil and I spotted this street sign on our way home on a warm London summer's evening. See all you guys soon!

Tim the sheep and Christmas Bear

Tim & Bear
Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
Department of Nutrition & Dietetics, St Mary's Hospital. We really do spend our days working... we do!

Photos of us, and some of our friends here in London

Here is Phil and I outside the National Gallery in Trafalgar Square (you might see some pigeons if you look closely enough). We were on our way to see the Rebels & Martyrs exhibition (thanks Lou for the tickets!) which featured the work of artists in Europe in the 18th & 19th century. Lots of self portraits that examined the role of the artist starting with shots of the suffering 'artist-as-Martyr' through those who challenged the establishment more directly, culminating with the 'flaneur'. A good afternoon.

Mel and Paula
Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
Me and Paula (that's Chris in the background), at the local Spanish tapas restaurant at Clapham North.

Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
Me and Mark on the tube, the last time he visited London. Well done Mark! I'll be seeing you in January!

London graffiti art by Arofish

Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
Saw this stencil on the way to Vinopolis in Borough. Took a step closer and liked the signature (see below for close up). Turns out the artist has done a lot of political stencils around London and in 2004 travelled through Iraq and the Lebanon. A lot of his? work is influenced by these travels. For more images, go to

Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.

Summer in London

Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
Me, Cath and friend in Regents Park. The fence behind was for the Taste New Zealand festival. £30 to see Dave Dobbyn and Bic Runga and then you had to pay for the wine and food as well! Nahhh we'll just sit over the fence for free and listen to the music whilst sipping on lovely bubbles and eating raspberries in the sun. Twas a fab afternoon....

Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
See - it doesn't always rain in London...

Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
Taken from outside the Tate Modern Gallery on South Bank.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Buckingham Palace, 20 July 2006

Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
Nadia and I outside the palace, after popping in to see Liz and Phil. The cucumber sandwiches were a bit soggy but the iced coffee was excellent!

Monday, August 07, 2006

Sky at night, London (from our flat)

we have had some of the most brilliant sunsets this summer. The heat has been quite extreme though in the past week it has been a bit cooler, thank god!

'This is a journey...'

Yes, yes, I know, it's been ages since we were in Europe - in my defence, I have been having issues with our internet connection (cough cough). This is me in Parliament Square, Athens.

Acropolis, Athens
Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
Acropolis, Athens (ooh err couldn't that be a postcard!)

Church, Athens
Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
After we arrived we went looking for a bite to eat. This church was in a square near our hostel. We had the best 'gyro' kebabs I've ever eaten...Mmmmmm

Theatre, Acropolis, Athens
Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
as you walked up to the Acropolis, this theatre was on the way up the hill

Booga and the Acropolis
Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
Booga on the Acropolis - moments later we got a scolding from one of the guides for putting Booga in a photo - oops! Interestingly a Greek Aussie friend that we know explained that a lot of Aussie tourists had been taking the piss by taking all manner of things up the Acropolis and taking photos, then selling them to advertising agencies - hence, the ban on taking such photos...

Acropolis and dog
Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
Acropolis and (another) dog. Stray dogs are everywhere, lying on the street and in the gutters, on the pavements etc. People just walk around them. If a car comes along, the dog just yawns and moves as far as it needs to without being run over. Nice doggie!
The buildings on the Acropolis were amazing. Mum was freaking out because I was so close to the edge. It is pretty high up!

Main port, Kefalonia, Greece
Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
Argostoli harbour, Kefalonia. We stopped briefly at Kefalonia before the ferry continued on to Ithaki.
Carob Cottage, Lefki, Ithaki, Greece. Our accommodation whilst on the island.

Lefki, Ithaki, Greece
Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
Mum and Dad's sleepout at Carob Cottage
The sea from our window, Ithaki. Pretty tough view to wake up to, ay?

Hee hee! Lefki, Ithaki, Greece
Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
Hee hee! Lefki, Ithaki. These three wheelers are used everywhere (in Italy too)
Mel at Vathy Harbour, Ithaki

Stavros Beach, Ithaki, Greece
Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
Stavros Beach. I actually went swimming there! (well I did put my head under, and take my feet off the bottom)
Happy families ; - ), Carob Cottage

Cats, Ithaki, Greece
Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
Cats - they're everywhere! This is at a waterside restaurant in Kioni. There was an amazing jewellery shop in the village as well.
Ag. Ioannis, Ithaki. The beach down the road from our cottage (you had to drive to get there though)...
View from the Monastery at the top of Ithaki, looking towards Vathy - we're both looking pale for a reason - we're at 600 metres above sea level - and the road up there was seriously narrow and windy - and we were sharing it with the goats!

The Monastery, Ithaki, Greece
Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
The Monastery of Kathariotissa, Ithaki
Anogi, the highest village on the island, coming back down from the monastery
More than one macho man! What more can I say....
"Cruisin' on the Interislander" - leaving Vathy, and Ithaki, en route to Italy

Milan, Italy
Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
Milan. This is a typical building near the railway station. In Milan, we stayed at the most expensive hotel on our whole trip - and it was not much better than the £10 a night hostel in Athens! Damn fashion capital of the world!

'Ciao' - Firenze, Italy
Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
'Ciao' - Vespas in Firenze, Italy. After travelling on the train from Milan, we spent a morning there before picking up our rental car and heading south into Tuscany.
After driving for an hour and a half from Florence, this is the view that greeted us - not bad, ay? BTW - the motorways in Italy are great to get around on. We had a fab rental car too - very zippy - thank god for automatic transmissions too...

Podere Finerri, Italy
Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
The courtyard, Podere Finerri
Our apartment, Podere Finerri, Tuscany

Gigoletto and view, Tuscany
Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
Gigoletto and the view from Podere Finerri. Gigoletto gets her name from her friendliness towards strangers ; - )

Asciano town, Tuscany, Italy
Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
Asciano town, Tuscany. The closest town to Podere Finerri. Really lovely and quiet - Daniella took me into town one morning when we dropped the kids off at school and we stopped at the local bar for the best coffee and pastry I've ever had in my life. Mmmmm...

Ayyyy, Italian twisties
Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
Ayyyy, Italian twisties

Italian dinner, homemade
Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
Italian dinner, homemade from local produce (the garden and the local co-op). We hardly visited a restaurant when we were in Italy - what was on offer at the market was too good!

Castillo gates, Chianti, Italy
Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
The gates of Castello Brolio, Chianti, Italy

Phil is wee! Chianti, Italy
Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
Phil is wee! The walls of Castello Brolio, Chianti
The alimenteri, Lucignano d'Asso. Recommended by Malcolm, this grocery store was 25 mins drive from Poderri Finerri in the little village of Lucignano d'Asso. The lovely gentleman in the background runs the grocery store with his wife. For 15Euro per person, you got a large carafe of the local red, a huge platter of cured meats, a platter of cheeses, bread, fresh tomatoes, olive oil and other condiments. Absolute bargin, and a sunny day to boot!

Pienza and Booga, Italy
Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
Booga with Pienza in the distance
Phil and I in the Piazza della Signoria, Siena. I found a shop next to the Piazza that sold nothing but coffee machines - needless to say, I bought one!

Pienza, Italy
Originally uploaded by mellopuffy.
Pienza street, Italy