“I’ve seen life burn bright, I’ve seen it shimmer,
They fade like starlight to a glimmer…”

Hi folks,

So much for Final Destination – thankfully 🙂 How’s things with you? All good I trust!

Yes, I’m back and just about over the jeg lag. The flight was rather long and yes, we were both nervous. Yet, the Fates smiled and nothing serious happened. Yay! Everyone was fine at home and there was smiles all round when we got back. Indeed, a couple of midweek telephone calls seemed to find Wee Man in unusually high spirits, I don’t know what Granny had been feeding him, but it can’t be legal. (Ed: Child Services, if you’re reading this, that was a joke).

Much as I enjoy a bit of travel – except maybe flying – it was good to be back. Back with the kids and good to be home in your own bed. Sure, meals out and the chance for a drink were nice, but I’ve put 2 lbs on. Bummer 🙂 Oh well. On with the walking shoes and off we go I guess.

The wedding – which was the whole reason we went – was very good. It was outside and the venue looked out over a valley and up into the mountains. Despite people’s warnings about it being bitter cold, it couldn’t have been better weather. A wonderful blue sky and just the right amount of sunshine to keep us all warm. The bride, well, she looked great. It was a simple dress and shrug which suited her perfectly. The groom – like the rest of us – were dressed very casually, but then my friend B. was never one for suits and ties. The vows were said and readings were made. All very touching. I saw a few folk dabbing at their eyes behind sunglasses… including me (natch).

I’d remembered to bring my camera (and charger) this time around and while I was careful not to wave it around, I got a few pictures. Much of the day is very present in my head as I write this. It’s nice to have that record to remind you when the details drift. As I held the Ever Lovely Mrs Jones’s hand during the service, I was reminded of my own wedding and how much that meant. You may now honk into a bucket if you wish 😉

Talking to the locals was interesting. I mean, I think it’s good to know people from other countries. Much as I liked the holiday, I don’t think I’d like to live anywhere other than England. Sure, 90% of the people I meet abroad are pleasant and good natured. Yes, Britain has its fault – and no, don’t ask me to list them 🙂 – but I like it here I really do. I guess living just outside a city is fine for me. I get quiet nights but ‘civilisation’ – if you can call Nottingham that – isn’t that far away. To each their own I guess.

Travel also lets you see how other cultures – okay, western cultures – dress. It’s interesting – at least to me – to see how some trends are global (Uggs) and which ones are more localised. I guess certain climates and terrain put a limit on what you can wear. Equally, global branding and whatnot push trends across the planet. What I do like to see is how a country – or town for that matter – will take up a trend and make it their own in some small way. It’s the little things I guess.

Chams is next week and it seems an age since I last felt the graceful swish of a skirt. Blimey, a long weekend and then a night out with the ladies. My cup runneth over. 😉

Take care,

[ Today’s lyric: Call the Shots by Girls Aloud ]


  1. Pleased that you made it back safe, and had a good time whilst there.

    with trends I was always surprised by how much doesn't travel. As the crow flies I'm about 400-500 miles away I think, but with the exception of the global trends (as you say the Uggs) the dress code over here is somewhat different. It's not something I was expecting…


  2. Petra: Yes, all back home now, thanks. Uggs? Oh, I don't mind them. I think they can look good with the right skinny jeans or leggings.

    That said, I suppose it's a look that the nation (UK at least) has taken to its heart and the fact that everyone seemed to wear them (at least at one point) may have killed the fun. Still, comfy for short periods of time.

    Stace: Mrs J and I have a lovely time, thank you. Sure there are global trends, but it seems each nation takes what it likes and different things catch on in different places.

    Sophie: Safe and sound indeed. Thursday? Yup! See you there.

  3. Much as I liked the holiday, I don't think I'd like to live anywhere other than England.

    Growing up, I was quite the Anglophile myself, probably because I read so many books, and watched so many TV programmes, set in your neck of the woods. Maybe it was simply because your country seemed so green (compared to the dustbowl mine is in so many parts, and/or at so many times of the year); whatever it was, I simply couldn't imagine a more perfect part of the world to live in. Then, one day, my feelings did a complete 180, and the idea of living in the UK lost all of its earlier appeal. I used to joke it was because of all those dingy London housing estates I'd see on shows like The Bill, but really, I don't know why my feelings about the place changed so dramatically. Now, however, they're starting to move back in the opposite direction. Really, though, I figure I need to come over and see the place for myself before I can make a realistic judgement about it – I'm sure that when I finally do, I'll find it's neither as good or as bad as I once imagined.

    Travel also lets you see how other cultures – okay, western cultures – dress.

    When I spent a few weeks in Texas some years back, I was struck by how many of the men there wore cowboy hats. I also observed that a lot of the younger Latino men were fond of flashy jewellery, particularly big silver chains with equally big silver charms hanging off them (a particularly impressive example of the latter thing I saw was a scorpion). I really liked that particular look; I tend to like anything eye-catching, be it worn by males or females.

  4. Zosimus: Television, always an accurate portal into society and culture (!) 🙂 The UK is very green: lots of trees, rolling hills – or rolling flats in the case of Lincolnshire or Norfolk 🙂 – and when it isn't… it feels, to an ex-countryboy at least, kind of wrong. I like urban areas, but there needs to be greenry. The constant roll of concrete is weary on the soul.

    If you do come across, please, do take the chance to leave London and go for a proper wander. The Lake District is very nice and there's a lot to be said by hiring a car and just making your own way around these isles. I think avoiding the motorways – while slower – will let you see more of the country and its people. Some of it will be great, other bits, not so.

    Texas.. Yes, that surprised me too… at least it did in Arizona, we didn't make it as far as Texas. 🙂 I suppose they are like hats + corks or flat caps in the north: you don't expect to see people wearing them, yet they do…. with gusto! 🙂

  5. Thanks for the travel advice. I've a younger brother who went to the UK around the time he turned 21 (in part because he really did not want people back home throwing him a party or otherwise making a fuss over him on his birthday), and he pretty much just wandered all over the country with no real itinerary in mind. He liked the place a lot, and ideally would like to live and work there one day.

    Glad to hear that, if nothing else, the portrayal of England as green is accurate. I often marvel at the fact that there is still so much unspoilt countryside there, given that it's a relatively small place with a lot of people living in it!

    As for your mention of Arizona, I saw a bit of that state while travelling by train from LA to Texas. As I recall, there were a lot of cacti there. 🙂

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