Saturday, 31 March 2007

Do you like your potato naked or clothed?

I'd say that if I were taking my potato to a nice restaurant I'd like it to wear a dinner jacket. Well here in the good 'ol UK I am in luck. While at lunch with a few of Josh's colleagues I queried as to what a jacket potato was. One of the guys shrugged and said "Maybe because it still has it's jacket on?" Seemed much cuter than just saying baked potato. I like it, I think I'll keep it.

Thursday, 29 March 2007

Fancy a dip?

I about died laughing when I saw this...Here's what you do...

Go to
type in New York to Dublin...hit enter there?

Scroll down to step 23...

Grab those arm floaties, it's gonna be a long night. ;P

*Found on

Sunday, 25 March 2007

Thwarted by Summer Time!

Last night we met up with Josh's colleague and his wife for dinner. We went to this gorgeously charming French restaurant in London. It was a lovely dinner with the exception of my sea bass arriving to the table complete with head and tail. I thoroughly enjoyed the company and they invited us back to their new flat after dinner. We sat around and chatted and drank wine as the time flew by. We realized that it was getting late and unfortunately the trains stop running at a certain time of the night. So he went online for us to check the last train. The last train was at 2 am. So at half one they drove us over to the train station and we said our goodbyes. After walking around the train station and coming across nothing but closed doors we had to call back with profound apologies that we were not able to make it home that night. He came back through the train station and we went back to their flat. We chatted for a bit watched *ahem* a silly movie called Kentucky Fried Movie, which is not quite my thing, and crashed out shortly after. This morning when Josh and I woke up, Josh's friend was in the living room watching football (soccer). The cable box read 1 hour later than we thought it should be. Turns out the train was at the exact hour of the summer time change over (daylight savings) which we were at the time unaware. So we missed the train by an hour. It was the first time that the time change got the better of me. I am going to miss that brief few weeks where the difference between me and my peeps in LA was a mere 7 hours. Oh well, back to staying up past my bedtime to chat with home. :)

Tuesday, 20 March 2007

St. Patrick's Day in Dublin...

Here's what I have to show from our trip in Ireland. Let's just say I went to Dublin for St. Patrick's Day. At least I can now say that forever. That and some cute boots is all I have to show for it. Everyone was really great and they LOVE Americans....of course until we got on the train home.

Here is a little picture highlight from the trip...

Our First drink of the day...I think was around 1 or so...There was girl already throwing up in the bathroom at this time of day. Good times!

Josh's great little hat

Look at that sea of green, the funniest part of this parade is they played the tune to America, America over and over again...wonder if we stole it? Or vice versa...

Woo Hoo, we now love rugby...just don't vote for England in this bar. We were Ireland "fans" for the game.

Aren't we cute? Awwww.....

I stole Josh's hat because I sold my shamrock boppers headband to some guy for a profit of 4 euros. Josh felt bad for the guy...feels I ripped him off. I don't feel bad, I got a drink out of it. :) (I have like the same pose in every picture, is this my good angle?)

This guy enjoyed a little Irish spirit as well.

This is Josh when I told him to smile, then Josh when I told him not to squint. Look at that gorgeous blue sky!

Too bad this is the weather we got 15 min later. It's very true what they say about Ireland going through every season in the course of a day.

This is the best day after party shot ever....wish my house looked like this on clean up the next day. That definitely indicates a successful party.

Here's the last pic of the trip, saying bye to Ben right before we headed off for the train ride from hell...(check out the train ride blog, what a nightmare!)

Monday, 19 March 2007

The train ride from hell!!!!

"You want to fight? I dare any of you to step up and fight me right now!" said the skinny British girl in the aisle of the overnight train to Birmingham New Street.

Let's go back though in true Quentin Tarantino style, back to the beginning. The weather in Ireland this weekend turned rough thus causing all ferries to be canceled. We were moved to the 8:55 ferry into Holyhead. Now because of this it rendered our train connection at the port useless since there was no way to make it there short of swimming from Ireland to Wales. That was out of the question as we didn't have our suits. So we tried to change our train, but we were just told to show up and take our chances finding a seat. The ferry took 3 hours and we had to wait another hour for the train. It was due to leave around 1 am. We had a plan. Josh would find a seat while I would find a conductor to make sure my ticket would be valid.

When I couldn't find anyone to talk to, I hunted down Josh who was lucky to grab two unreserved seats. I was looking forward to settling in and getting some shut eye. It was quickly apparent that peaceful rest was out of the question. I watched in horrified awe as the family in front us, who must have consisted of aunts, uncles, grandma and multiple children, as they pulled out a brand new bottle of vodka and Budweisers. They were singing Irish songs loudly and started to light up cigarettes right on the train! The kids were running rampant through the train and the kid next to Josh was trying to light the seat on fire.

Through some malfunction in the system any seat reservations were canceled, leaving people who had previously arranged their tickets without a seat. Unfortunately, a few girls were assigned to the seats occupied by this family. They came up explaining that their tickets said that they were assigned those seats and were essentially told by this family to f#$* off. The first two girls that were in those seats were smart (or scared depending on how you look at it) and found other seats. One girl, however, decided to stand her ground while her friend went to get someone to help. She stood right in the middle of the family while they drank and smoked around her. The man kept touching her ass while the woman insulted her and told her to move her ass out of her face. The girl stood there and waited patiently. The children danced around her insulting her and one kid (who Josh has nicknamed "devil spawn") took his shoes off and put them into her face. The girl told him not to do that, much like a parent would and yet his father sat there watching and egging him on. Meanwhile, you must not forget that they were still drinking and singing through this all. The family kept at her and eventually she turned around and shouted back at them.

"Any of you want to fight me? Come on stand up and fight me."

No one stood. No one even responded.

"That's what I thought" she retorted.

Eventually the conductor came back and had to explain to the girl that unfortunately she could not ask them to move and she found the girls seats elsewhere. The woman came back later and handled that family with such amazing calm and ease. I was surprised at the way she handled the situation. She told them kindly that the next stop had a ten minute break and they would be able to go out and smoke at that point and asked them to please wait until then to smoke. Not that that stopped them.

They continued on in the same manner for a while. The kids were making us nervous because I kept envisioning them climbing around under the seats and stealing from our bags so instead of sleeping, I was on high alert. At some point the woman who had been singing the loudest sort of passed out drunk so a teenage girl of the family pulled her out of her seat and dragged her down the aisle to another seat farther down. When the drunk woman came to a bit she starting cursing at the man in front of me which in turn he stood up and started cursing back at her. Only he started throwing water at her and shouting that he was going throw his now empty vodka bottle out the window and he hoped the train crashed with all of them in it. The family that was on the other side of his anger got up and went to another car, sending the young boy back and forth to collect all of their things.

The man started screaming at the boy, "Jimmy, you leave those clothes here. Jimmy bring that stuff back here now!"

The kid ignored him and ran with the bags. The man plopped down in his seat so clearly drunk and angry. The "devil spawn" sat down with him and said, "Dad, why do you hate Jimmy so much?"

It was so sad! I felt like this kid was asking the wrong questions, he was so young that he didn't understand that his dad is really just a drunk imbecile and that it isn't that he hates Jimmy. So the dad asks the kid to go into the other car and see what's going on. So the kid runs off, meanwhile the dad is sitting there stewing in anger, I could feel him getting restless and he stood up to follow his son. All I kept thinking is, "Oh man this can't be good." Sure enough, at the next stop the train stopped for a few minutes. I could see people getting off the train to smoke and get snacks. It started to become too long though and we were all wondering what was taking so long. The little kid came running back to his mom who was passed out next to Josh. He started shaking her saying, "Dad's getting put off the train, mom, he needs his jacket." I thought it was so funny how this was the concern. Dad needs his jacket to get thrown off. The mom grumbled for a minute and then jumped up when she realized what the kid was actually saying. They went running off in the other direction to find the dad.

A few minutes later the kid was running back to the car to get their things and to rouse his two brothers who were sleeping on the floor in the aisle. He ran off again, leaving the two brothers to fall back asleep. The next time he returned it was with the lady conductor and two very frazzled looking men with walkie-talkies. I looked out the window and saw a few police men running around as well. The American students behind me were getting frustrated and kept asking the woman if we were getting under way soon as we all needed to catch the connection to London. She told them that she apologized, but that that man was getting arrested and that there was nothing she could do at the moment. She was trying to help the kid figure out all the stuff that belonged to the family. When they started to walk away I looked over and realized that they were leaving one of the brothers. I waved down the lady and said that I thought he belonged to them as well as the kid has tried to wake to tell him that dad was getting arrested.

Eventually they were all off the train and we were underway again. A huge cheer erupted from our car! Luckily we made the connection without a problem, and two more trains and an Underground ride later we were home. The moral of the story according to Josh, The US is not the only place with white trash families.

Sunday, 11 March 2007

Hunting Banksy in East London

With a friend in town wanting to see London, we set out to pack as much into our Saturday as we could manage. Of course with engineering work on all the trains in the underground it hinder our touring quite a bit.

We set a plan, I wanted to see the changing of the guards which we have attempted to see many times. We got up early to go into the city and turns out they weren't doing the changing of the guards yesterday. Then I wanted to take the tour of Westminster and see the famous tombstones. We literally showed up the second they were closing the doors for the day. We walked around Buckingham Palace which was nice. We headed over hoping to catch some people shooting off their mouths at Speaker's Corner, which I might add we've been into London trying to catch three times now. Of course, there was no one there. Not so much of a loss though as when we were walking out I caught the picture above. I have passed this before and should have taken the picture. So this time I took the opportunity.

Next we went shopping and we found the area that is full of used book stores. I am on a hunt for first edition British Harry Potter books, I know, I'm a nerd. I didn't really want to subject Ben to used book stores. So we decided to go to our next step, which was Brick Lane in East London so I could hunt down some Banksy art work, since he frequents this area. With three trains closed for work we had to take the long way around. When we got to the third train we found the stop that we needed was closed permanently and because we didn't have time to find an alternate route I had to give up my Banksy search and take the train needed to catch our walking tour.

We had a plan to take the Jack the Ripper tour near the Tower of London. The tour was fascinating! I was really excited about it because I was disappointed about not being able to check out the Banksy spots. The guy that gave the tour was so animated and interesting. He added a lot of intensity and extra acting to an otherwise routine speech. While hearing about the many theories of Jack the Ripper we walked through the creepy cobblestone alley ways of East London.

There was one alleyway that the tour took us through, that had two pieces on the wall. The one to the right above is arguably Banksy's Jack the Ripper. On the left is also arguably Banksy. I loved the doves though. I thank Josh for this shot because we were walking through this very narrow alley with a group of about 30 people and I was on the far left. I saw the Jack the Ripper, but missed the doves. Josh grabbed me and we ran back to get the picture. I snapped them so fast and it was dark, getting them developed today I was so nervous that they weren't going to come out. With the exception of a slight shadow at the bottom corner of Jack the Ripper I was quite pleased with the results. We had to run down a few streets to find the group again. I almost ran into a few people on the run. :) At the end of the day, Banksy or not, I caught some of the street art I was hoping to find. I guess it just proves that it is better to happen upon things rather than searching it out.

Wednesday, 7 March 2007

Internet, sweet internet!!

Ah! We finally have a decent internet connection. Virgin came today to install the modem. It took two and a half weeks for it to happen, but we are finally connected to the modern world. I feel good. I feel like I can stretch my legs and I feel like I am not isolated in my little flat. Now I can start blogging again. I will come up with something interesting to blog about soon. We are going on the Jack the Ripper tour in London this weekend. Unless you want me to blog about the TV I've been watching since that's all I've been able to do. :)