18 November 2013


Did you know the iPhone specifically pulls all your panorama shots from you Camera Roll into a separate album? I just discovered it! I loved these moments and the perspective that panorama gives the camera. Here are my favorites from the last year... Enjoy! 

South Beach, Hilton Head Island
Inside the Zach Theatre, Austin 
Banks of Colorado River, Austin
University of Georgia Commencement at Sanford Stadium, Athens
Sailing the Aegean, Greece
Beach Club on Perivolos Beach, Santorini
Panorama gone bad... Sunset over Oia, Santorini
Pisso Livadi, Paros
Tomorrowworld, Chattahoochee Hills GA
Rooftop Terrace at the Glenn Hotel, Downtown Atlanta
Room in the Topkapi Palace, Istanbul

15 November 2013

British Tour: York

Walking through The Shambles
I'll just start by saying: Lauren made an excellent choice by choosing The University of York for graduate school. I had an amazing time exploring York and learning its history. Lauren, being the incredible storyteller she is, was the perfect host. I arrived on Tuesday morning, still feeling jetlagged and met Lauren at the train station. It was so great to see her! 

The Yorkshire people are incredibly proud to be from York, and for good reason. There's a lot to be proud about. The place known today as York has been a home to different groups for several thousand years. During the Roman times, York was the seat of the Roman Empire in Britain. When the railway station opened, it was the largest in Europe at the time. Then, they have the Minster. The Yorkminster took 250 years to build, finished in the late 1400's. It's a massively beautiful building with immaculately detailed stained glass.

Even though Lauren had been in York about a month, she still knew so much and took me to some really cool places. Plus, having a guest gives you reason to go do the more touristy you may not normally do. So for that, you're welcome. The night I got in, the lead archaeologist on the King Richard III excavation gave a lecture at the University. Read the story here. It was just little moments like that, that made me shake my head and laugh. Life is pretty damn cool. One night, we went on a ghost tour through the city and heard tales of ghost soldiers walking though basements built on Roman roads, torturing in insane asylums, orphaned children in the Plague... you know, light stuff. While Lauren was in class, I went to the York Museum and explored.
King's College, the building where Lauren has classes
There was some great food in York. I had just started my 'gluten sensitive' diet the week before so I tried to stick to that as much as possible. Then Betty's Tea Room happened and whewwww those scones. Betty's Tea Room is an institution for baking, tea and all things British. While they serve food, the price tag (dollars to pounds makes me want to cry) suggested we opt for Afternoon Tea. We received a large kettle of tea, two scones each and plenty of jam and clotted cream.
Look at that presentation!
We also went to a cool gluten-free vegan restaurant called El Piano. Certainly not traditional British cuisine but awesome none the less. There was a warmth and quaintness to York that felt timeless. Even though I'd never been, it seemed familiar and that's pretty cool. I'm so glad that Lauren has plenty of time to explore Yorkshire and places in the UK. I wish I could have stayed longer! Especially now that the Christmas Markets are running. But alas, I got on another train bound for Kings Cross Station in London.
There was a chill in the air, but the blue skies made for beautiful days in York. 

11 November 2013

British Tour: Manchester

Hello world, I'm back! In October, I had a once in a lifetime opportunity. When those things happen, you can't just watch them past. Clare the Nanny is no more, but no matter. On to the next. I'll let you know what the next is when I figure it out. Enough with the bad grammar. So, I had some time, flight benefits coming to an end and two best friends in England. What's a gal to do? I planned a 10 day trip in about 2 days and all the while, my sense of adventure and excitement came rushing back. I was ecstatic to see my friends and explore some new parts of the beautiful world. I couldn't have done it without knowing Lauren and Mallory were waiting for me on the other side of the pond. It helped that my mom was scheduled to work a flight to Manchester from Atlanta. 

Getting on the flight flying standby is always a relief. It's even more fun when Mom's a flight attendant, working in her element at 35,000 feet. We arrived to Manchester early Monday morning and took a nap at The Midland Hotel. It was a beautiful hotel, famous for hosting a meeting between a Mr. Rolls and a Mr. Royce that started a car company. I probably could have stayed up, but Mom was tired after working all night. When we got up at about 2PM, we walked around the cold and windy city. I visited my first Caffe Nero, grabbed a coffee and some tomato basil soup. I love Caffe Nero now. Please come to America. Then came the usual stops: Boots, Primark, Marks and Spencer. After a great Thai dinner along with her friend Cathy, we headed to the Palace Theater for a night I'll never forget.

Wicked is one of those cultural phenomenons you hear about. If you've seen it, you get it. If you haven't seen it, you may think you get it... but you don't. I've seen Rent, Mamma Mia, The Lion King on Broadway but there was something about the beauty of the Palace Theater and the sheer brilliance of Wicked. I don't mean to sound dramatic when I say it may have changed my life.

The next morning, I hoped on a train to York...
...more on that tomorrow!