Showing posts from October, 2015

Eating Italian

It’s no secret that I love Italian food. It’s always my default, and especially when eating out there just seems to be something for everyone.
Here’s a rundown of three places I’ve loved eating at recently.
Spaghetti House
Spaghetti House have numerous locations across London and I’ve been consistently impressed. I’ve found there’s occasionally slow service, but the quality of the food is brilliant.

On this particular visit, we sampled the garlic bread (the best I’ve had anywhere), a burger and chips, and classic tomato and basil spaghetti.

With pasta made fresh and beautiful ingredients, this is a chain I know I’ll keep returning to.

I stumbled across L’Ulivo on a day out with my parents, and it turned out to be a great discovery. We went at a late summer’s lunchtime, and sat outside near busy Leicester Square.

Although the service was a little slow, the meals were delicious. My pasta was full of perfectly roasted vegetables, my dad’s pizza was beautifully cooked, and mum was …

Busy Old Exciting Old London

London is a busy place.
It’s full of people, full of events, full of tourist attractions. Whether you’re a born and bred Londoner, or move to the capital for work, family, or a whole host of other reasons, there are so many people calling this place home.
Since August, I’ve been one of them.
I moved here for work, a week before starting my new job, and to say the few months since then have been a whirlwind would be an understatement.
I can count on one hand the number of days I’ve had totally free, to do nothing at all.
Don’t get me wrong, the things I’ve been doing have been my choice, and I’ve loved it, but sometimes I’m left wishing I had a bit more time to do nothing.
What’s so silly about that thought is that it’s totally in my control. I don’t HAVE to book so many theatre trips, or arrange so many meals out, or catch up with three different people in a week. But there’s something about the pace of this city that makes you feel like if you don’t do things NOW then when on earth will yo…

Showstopper! The Improvised Musical

An improvised musical sounds like it could be either brilliant or terrible. Having heard such good reports of Showstopper! The Improvised Musical, though, the intrigue peeked and I clicked to buy tickets. I of course can’t tell you about the show you’ll see, if you go, as every performance is of a brand new musical. But I hope that by relaying what happened the night I was there, you might see just what a fantastic night of entertainment it was. (One of my colleagues booked his tickets immediately after I told him about it!)
Housed in a small auditorium at the Apollo, even those at the very back are only a stone’s throw from the stage, heightening the sense of inclusivity throughout the performance. Show number 640 opened with Sean McCann, ‘The Writer’ (and an excellent, charismatic narrator throughout) receiving a call from his producer demanding a new musical by 10pm. After appealing to the audience for setting suggestions, he gave us the chance to whoop and cheer to select our favour…

Work/Life Lessons from the Candidates of The Apprentice...

Well, it’s back: The Apprentice. Which truly means it’s Autumn, and that I’ll be glued to the tv on Wednesday evenings. I’ve got such a love/hate relationship with the show. I love watching it, but I hate some of the traits it shows up in the candidates. Of course it’s all entertainment, and we know these people would never make the series if they weren’t larger-than-life characters, but sometimes you just want to cover your eyes and live in denial that people could be so rude/loud/incapable/selfish/bullish (delete as appropriate). Editing plays a part too, but some of the scenes are just ridiculous. Like the man who told Lord Sugar no one had volunteered to be PM and he had expected more confidence… When he hadn’t put himself forward either. Or the project managers who seem unable to hear the voices of anyone else in the room. Or the man who applied to a show under LORD SUGAR admitting he couldn’t sell face-to-face. Of course, plenty get by in business without this skill – he ran an onli…

The Reading List #31

How do you decide what to read?
Last year, I stayed with my cousin and his wife for the weekend, where Kath pulled out lists of books she intended to work her way through. There was The Guardian’s ‘top 100 novels’ and one from The Times, and from just about every other publication you can imagine. On each, she had crossed of what she had read, and highlighted some she was planning to move onto next. All-in-all, it seemed like quite a good plan, but takes a bit of effort to get started! What’s your ‘method’?
Here’s the latest things I can ‘tick off’ my list:-

Captain Corelli’s Mandolin, Louis de Bernieres

In 1941, Captain Corelli, an Italian officer, is posted to Cephallonia. At first, he is ostracised, but slowly proves himself. Alongside this, the local doctor’s daughter’s letters to France are being left unanswered.
This book addresses a fragile triangle, set against the backdrop of war. Parts of the narrative were beautiful and I liked the different perspectives from which the sto…

Green Day's American Idiot - Review

I wasn’t too sure what to expect when I took my seat at The Arts Theatre for a matinee performance of American Idiot. All I knew beforehand was that it was a musical based on the music of Green Day, and purposefully had read nothing else about it, as I like to avoid holding any preconceptions as far as possible.

On entering the small auditorium, news clips were already playing on a small screen on the stage, mainly in black and white, from the aftermath of 9/11. This was loud, to the point where normal conversation was disrupted, and created a tense atmosphere even before the show began. Green Day’s American Idiot album was written at a particular moment in time, and this is what the musical serves to portray. Post-9/11, the country was changed forever, and the album attempts to sum up the ‘new’ state of America. Though I’m familiar with many Green Day songs, I hadn’t before paused to listen to this album straight through, and I know now I was really missing the message. The musical move…