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Blue Waters Resort, Antigua

SO, the time had finally come. After two postponements due to my Dad’s ill health, we were finally ready to fly to Antigua for our family holiday. I’m not sure the last time I went on holiday with my parents, on my own. Probably 25 years ago. Maybe even a bit longer? And having had the holiday postponed twice during the year, I wasn’t really sure that we would ever get there!

We flew from Gatwick, and had Club World seats out there, which meant champagne on the plane and a lovely meal, followed by watching the pretty dreadful Ab Fab film and a snooze.

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The fact we could rest meant I arrived in Antigua after the 8-hour flight feeling quite chipper and not immediately needing to go to bed. As my Dad was met from the plane by a wheelchair,  we were whizzed through immigration and were out with our bags before we knew it. VIP service ;-). We got a cab from the airport, which was really easy with a desk directly outside arrivals. The hotel is only about 20 minutes from the airport, and a very reasonable $15 USD, so we were there in no time, where we were welcomed with a drink – you could choose from rum or fruit punch – and completed check in while sitting down sipping our cocktail. Very chilled.

Our rooms had a sea view and were right next to eachother, and they were lovely. As we had booked the all-inclusive option you even got an extensive range of drinks in the mini bar, with a list to order more or different ones to your taste. And because my parents had been to Blue Waters before, a bottle of chilled champagne awaited them in their room with a personalised note welcoming them back. A very nice touch indeed.

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Blue Waters is listed as one of the premium resorts on Antigua, and I can see why. Crystal blue sea, fringed by white sand beaches – all overlooked from 3 separate swimming pools and the main restaurant. It’s a very relaxing place and somewhere you can rest as much as you want, or if you want to be more active there are some watersports, a gym and a spa. Mum and I opted for facials, which were lovely, and about as active as we got.

I was only staying for 5 nights, so pretty soon it was time to leave again. We’d saved the champagne to have before I left, so after getting ready for the airport we shared a glass on the terrace of my parents room and I was whisked off in a cab for my flight home.

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A very flying visit, but even with such a short stay I had chance to relax and spend some precious time with Mum and Dad. And all too quickly it was back to London and into the December party madness!

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Whirlwind November

November was a really busy month. We kicked it off staying in London at The Malmaison and going shopping at Alexander McQueen for my Birthday handbag. Even though my Birthday is in September I’ve been putting off buying a bag, worried about the cost. But I finally got frog-marched to McQueen’s in Mayfair and told I couldn’t leave until I bought something – so I bought a bag and a bracelet :-) It’s the most gorgeous shop, with a great selection of the collection and accessories, and we were offered a seat and a glass of champagne, which we took them up on. The bag is amazing, and even the packaging was gorgeous.

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We also went to a charity quiz night with some clients, and had lunch at Murano. I went with my mum and aunt to Harrods for a lovely pedicure and I did some planning with my new wall planner, as well as cooking and labelling a million meals for the freezer.

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We also did a small impromptu no-hen-hen do for Nikki and I went with my friend Mel to a chemo session.

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We rounded the month off with cocktails at the Mayfair Hotel and dinner with Madge’s family and I got ready to fly to Antigua for a holiday with my parents. Whirlwind November indeed, on top of a really busy time at work and continuing train nightmares. I need to slow down…and stop spending!

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Earls Court

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The King Blues, Camden

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I first saw The King Blues at a small gig in the middle of the afternoon at Komedia in Brighton, years ago and fell in love with them then. A few years later, in November 2011 I saw them play The Roundhouse in Camden, a huge venue in comparison and just around the time ‘Punk & Poetry‘ came out. And just before they imploded and split up.

A few weeks ago we happened to be in London on a Saturday and at a bit of a loose end. I couldn’t believe my luck to find that the band were playing that night, and on their home turf in Camden. It was pretty much a no-brainer, although it was a sold out gig. We went along anyway, hoping to get in and we got lucky. It was a tiny venue, a proper pub gig where you are right up against the stage and the music feels raw and vital. It was a full house and we had a great time – The Fiddlers Elbow is a nice venue, with friendly staff and it’s easy to get a drink. Even managed to wangle a set list and it was only a 10 minute cab ride home to the Montcalm Hotel, where we stayed. Great night.

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