Saturday, February 9, 2019

How to Explore the Best of Chinatown London in a Day

London's Chinatown is always bursting with energy. It is a riot of flavours, smells, textures and colours waiting to be explored. And with the start of the Year of the Pig (5th February) Londoners and tourists alike are heading to the city's Oriental wonderland, eating and drinking their way through dumplings, pig-shaped macarons and everything in between.

I spent last Saturday evening wandering through its many streets, and here's my list of the best of Chinatown London.

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

10 Free (Budget) Things to Do in London: January & February 2019

I entered 2019 with no word of the year. No intentions.

This might have been an attempt to try and not hold on too tight, to keep the pressures of life at bay. But mostly, it was a reminder to trust yourself, trust the process and be fluid. To find your inner light, be your best self and let each day flow from one to the next. 
I am surprised how magnetically things are taking shape and how in control I am, by not holding on too tight, and keeping things fluid. With plenty of room for the unexpected and serendipity, so far this month I have taken a short weekend trip to Aberdeen, submitted an article to a magazine I've been wanting to write for since a long time, attended a wonderful evening of cocktails and canapés at the media launch of the dazzling new Soho Residence, started planning for my next two dance movement workshops, and drafted a short story for a creative writing competition.

Being fluid has also helped me to do more, see more, and be more. Here's a list of 10 free or budget friendly things to do in London that are in my diary.

Monday, December 24, 2018

Twinkle in the Sky - Christmas in London

All you need to do these days, to rise above from the grey, gloomy weather, is to look up and see the twinkle in the sky! Have you had the chance to see the Christmas lights in the city?

Last year, I was lucky enough to be in Seven Dials at the live switch-on moment and what a special experience it was. There was a mega choir that made everyone on the streets sing along to Christmas tunes, free wreath making, mulled wine and hot chocolate, pop up shops and blitz and joy at every corner.

This year, though I missed out on making it to any lights switch on events, I made my way to some popular spots to ring in the festivities! If you are in London this time of the year, here's my mini-guide to see the best of Christmas lights in the city.

Christmas is Calling Sign at Oxford Street

This sets the tone! Christmas is Calling, at London!

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Showing Appreciation to Your Parents by Having Conversations that Matter

My fifty-seven and sixty-one year olds just announced that they signed up for Amazon Prime and are binge watching, wait for it, Grey’s Anatomy. Whaaat?

This was after they had finished Downton Abbey in just a couple of nights. A week living their lives as two twentysomethings, my dad complained of a sprained neck. It was then that I learnt, they had been glued to their television set way past their bedtimes!

“You need to cut down your TV-watching time, folks! Just two episodes in a day. Okay?” I said sternly.

Later, my sister and I, amused remembered the innumerable times the same dialogue had been aimed at us when we were in school.

How the tables have turned!

Saturday, December 1, 2018

Things to Do in London - December Edit | Aditi's Pen

Make it a December to Remember!

How did it get so late so soon? I can hear everyone saying. But I am not complaining. December is lined up with very merry events. From something to fire up my creative belly to tingle my taste buds at the many Christmas markets in the city!

So, here's my December Edit of Things to do in London. These are all the events I plan to attend; there is so much to do in this city and this by no means is an exhaustive list, just me on my mini adventures this month.

Saturday, November 24, 2018

Finding Autumn Magic in the New Forest | Aditi's Pen

If you follow me on Instagram, you'll know I'm a teeny bit obsessed with Autumn. The transition from the greens of summer to the stunning autumn colours is magical. And though this cosy weather is on its way out, we held on to it a tad bit longer as we spent a day in New Forest a few weeks back.

Only about a 90-minute train ride from London’s Waterloo Station, the New Forest was the perfect base for us to enjoy long woodland walks, snug reading nights in front of a crackling fireplace, and leisurely pub dinners.

“Autumn carries more gold in its pocket than all the other seasons.” 
― Jim Bishop

Saturday, November 3, 2018

Things to Do in London - November Edit | Aditi's Pen

We are in November! The days are getting shorter, the nights colder, the leaves are turning from a golden yellow to rusty orange, the cafes are smelling of pumpkin spices, and there is a smell of new adventure in the air.

I am looking forward to this month; we are planning a woodland getaway next weekend to capture the essence of autumn, and I am also looking forward to a few sparkling events in London.

November is the month where London starts prepping for Christmas. I have already planned to wander around at the end of this month to capture the Christmas lights and decorations in the city.
(Last year's 'Christmas in London' wanderings are still on my Instagram highlights, if you fancy a view!)

So, here's my November Edit of Things to do in London. These are all the events I plan to attend; there is so much to do in this city and this by no means is an exhaustive list, just me on my mini adventures this month.

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Escape London - Fighting All Odds to Get to the King's Throne

"When you play the game of thrones, you win or you die."
- Cersei, Game of Thrones

Well, we came out alive and well after a fun 60 minutes of solving puzzles at Escape London, Shepherds Bush, in an escape room loosely based on 'Game of Thrones' called 'Overthrone'.

Monday, September 24, 2018

Chasing the Last Bit of Summer Across the English Coast

A week back, we explored the timeless Edwardian seaside town of Bexhill-on-Sea. We had booked the trip at the very last minute, and our only plan was to relax by the sea, soaking in the tranquil surroundings.

But at every step, the town surprised us, enticed us. From its rich history, picturesque coastal walks to rich art and architecture, Bexhill sure came out to be East Sussex's best kept secret.

On a clear sunny Sunday afternoon, we took a leisurely 4 miles walk from Bexhill to St Leonards, stopping in between to immerse in the coastal views - the beach huts, crashing waves, playful seagulls, fisherman's lines hanging off the pebbled beach, children with big happy smiles holding even bigger ice-creams, dogs playing catch - just all things joyous.

Sharing few pictures from our walk.

Monday, August 27, 2018

Thirty-Two. Act-Two.

Thirty-Two. Act-Two.

When I turned thirty, the number didn't bother me. The big 30 didn't seem that big; the transition from 20s to 30s was pretty smooth and not life-altering in any manner (no sobbing in the shower, no panic attacks, nothing like the movies/books/sitcoms would have us believe).

But then, I quit my job in November, partly as I needed to be home with family, but mostly because I needed to do things for myself. No, I wasn't going through the 'turning-30-crisis' or 'quarter-life-crisis' as some call it.

I was however learning to beTo be proud of who I am, what I believe in and how I see the world. To be imperfect, messy, confused, but always trying. Always trying, to better myself.

Society has created a timeline that pressures women into believing we must have everything figured out and accomplished by a certain age. But I enjoy swimming against the tide, and while most people said to me you can't start over at 30, I said why the hell not! Every single day grants you the opportunity to start over, and so I took a dive and swam towards the kind of life that would make me happier and fulfilled.

Last week I celebrated turning 32, and as I sat with a cake in my hand, going through all the lovely and warm birthday wishes sent from all parts of the world, from friends and family, I couldn't help but feel grateful!

With age, I am learning to be. With age, I am learning to choose a life of abundance, gratitude, and of self-worth.

So, this is my thirty-two something list. Things I've gained perspective on, things I'm still figuring out. Lessons learnt and few things I've had to unlearn.