Sunday, April 26, 2009

Springtime in London

Over the past three weeks, London has been experiencing some amazing spring sun and warm temperatures. Like the rest of London, we have been trying to take advantage of the weather (especially since this just may the closest thing to Summer that we see!). I have enjoyed some fantastic long runs on the Heath and Schlopy is in his element as every canine in London seems to be out and about these days. Last weekend we hit a karoke bar for to celebrate a friend's birthday and then spent a pefect Sunday afternoon with a walk in the Heath and dinner at our favorite pub, The Holly Bush. And, of course, we had to follow it all up with a delicious late night crepe! This past Saturday, we met some of Jiggy's co-workers for dinner at Fakhreldine (, a fantastic lebanese restauarant with a view of Green Park. This place even came complete with a very active belly dancer! On Sunday, Jiggy joined thousands of other spectators in cheering on the runners at the London Marathon. Even though I was working and could not check out the race, I officially have the marathon itch. Berlin?

On another note, this weekend we are heading to Italy (specifically Tuscany) to celebrate our 5 year wedding anniversary! Stay tuned for details of our trip!


Saturday, April 18, 2009

A Taste of the States

Tristan and Grandmom sharing a kiss

Bowling with the all the nieces and nephews!

Last week, Jignesh was lucky enough to spend some time in Chicago visiting family and friends. He drove a car for the first time in over 7 months, endulged in Giordano's pizza and Buffalo Joe's wing, and participated in the popular midwestern hobby of bowling. He even stood in line at the DMV! After living in London for almost a year, he certaintly enjoyed his first vacation (not business related) trip to the States. However, he was also anxious to return "home" to London! Check out some pictures from his trip.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Where is the Easter Bunny?

I cannot believe that tomorrow is Easter. In the states, Easter marks the beginning of Spring and is celebrated with baskets overflowing with traditonal Easter candy, Easter egg hunts, family dinners, and new spring outfits. Here, signs of Easter are almost non-existent. Perhaps I am shopping in the wrong places but I have not seen a single Easter basket in the stores and the selection of Easter candy is disappointing. My search today of a chocolate bunny resulted only in a chocolate truck! Cadbury eggs, jelly beans, and peeps? Simply forget about it.

Since schools are on a break and the Friday before and the Monday after Easter are official bank holidays, I know that Brits do celebrate the holiday. I guess it is a more subtle celebration that is simply about spending some time with family rather than spending money on silly decorations, plastic eggs, and fake colored grass. Since Jignesh is in Chicago, I will be celebrating Easter alone and have to admit that right now I surprisingly prefer the commercialized American Easter over the quiet English one. And yes, I am craving a huge chocolate bunny with candy eyes!
Happy Easter!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

G20 Protests

Living in one of the most diverse and active cities in the world, you experience a little of everything. It is not unusual to be shopping on Oxford Circus (one of the busiest shopping areas in the world) and see hundreds of protesters expressing their opinions about various topics. While loud and boisterous, most of these protests are usually quite peaceful (and, I have to admit, entertaining). This week the G20 summit is being held in London (oh, and we saw Obama's helicopter making its way to central London on Tuesday evening...we waved but we could not tell if he waved back!) and with the state of the economy and the recent actions of many banks, the protesters have been out in the thousands (50,000 for a single protest). Because past protests of this kind have resulted in lynchings of businessmen, Jignesh's company advised its employees to dress down and take extra caution when travelling to and from work. Businesses and banks in the financial district expected the worse and boarded their windows. Many people throughout London decided to work from home and Jignesh said the underground was practically empty. Those that did brave central London opted for jeans rather than the usual suit and tie. Check out this link to see some of yesterday's protests. While some of them mirrored Woodstock with singing and peace, others looked more like a looting after Hurrican Katrina. Yes, it would have been extremely interesting to see all the action but I am glad that both Jignesh and I avoided the targeted areas.