We miss you…

Bella and I visited Kensington Gardens for a different reason today. We wanted to drop in at the park and lay flowers for Princess Diana because today was the day when the princess died in Paris 20 years ago.

We alighted a bus at the bottom of Kensington Church Street and bought a bouquet of flowers from an open-air florist by the church.

Gilded gate outside the palace was turned into a makeshift shrine for the princess and crowds were gathering around it…

On the same day 20 years ago, I was in Japan, spending my summer holiday with my parents. I still remember clearly what we were doing when the news of her death came in. It was an ordinary sunny Sunday morning and we were watching some news review show on TV. Out of the blue, a guy who was panelling the programme started to listen into his earpiece intently and then announced, ‘Princess Diana seems to be hurt in a traffic accident in Paris.’ My late dad, mum and I looked at each other and uttered ‘Oh my god!’ simultaneously. Then, we saw the same presenter’s expression turned very grave as he received more updates about the princess’s condition. ‘I am afraid to inform you but the princess has died.’ We all lost for words. ‘No, no, NO!’ Princess Diana was very popular in Japan. She was loved because of her beauty and her charity works. We were devastated by the news.

People were reading notes attached to the shrine and laying flowers…

I wanted to come here 20 years ago and mark my respect. Now, I can finally do it, I felt very emotional as I placed my bouquet along the fence.

I never saw her in person but I adored her beauty, especially her warm gaze…

It was difficult to believe that 20 years had passed since she was gone…

She was the best loved British royalty for sure and I miss her very much…

Britain did become a less interesting place since her death. Despite her sons has grown up to be two fine men, they can never match their mother’s star quality and charm. Diana really was one of a kind. She was a treasure.

Lots of media were there to cover how the public were marking their tribute…

BBC, Sky News, CNN, etc, all camping out between the statue of Queen Victoria and Round Pond…

I miss you, Princess Diana. Please rest in peace.

I will never forget you.

London Pride 2017

I must have a break from our road trip memoir today. There are yet bucket-loads to write about and I want to carry on while my memory is still fresh. However, today was a day for Pride in London, and Hubbie and I went to see the parade with Bella in tow.

Before joining a crowd on Regent Street, we decided to have lunch at SAID on Broadwick Street…

SAID has been a fixture of Broadwick Street for a number of years. They sell ludicrously tasty chocolates with amazing twists and also serve delicious Italian dishes. I just love the way they present their simple yet exquisite offerings.

I had SAID Salad – Honey coated roasted goat’s cheese with walnuts and dark chocolate shavings…

I must say, every mouthful was absulute joy. Who invented this amazingly moreish salad? Chocolate in salad? What a crazy but also wonderful idea!

The walnut had a hint of warm sweetness which went very well with the saltiness of the cheese. And the chocolate, it added another depth to the already colourful elements on the plate.

While we munched through our lunch, a group of drag queens were heading towards the parade…

 

 

They were gorgeous!

Later on, I saw them on London Live TV, performing in Leicester Square.

After lunch, we made our way to Regent Street via Carnaby Street and Beak Street. The street was really busy with the manifold of crowds lining along the barriers, waiting for the parade to commence.

‘Too many people here and can’t see a thing. Let’s move towards Piccadilly Circus!’ Hubbie suggested.

We weaved through the crowd, made a detour to an exhibition at Beetles + Huxley and eventually, made it to Piccadilly Circus.

Then, the party started!

 

 

Alas, I could only see moving flags and hear the beat and cheer.

‘Shall we move further down towards Pall Mall?’ We drifted along the crowd who seemed to have the same idea.

But our effort was in vain. Pall Mall was choking with the crowd too!

And Bella decided to sing along with the parade…

 

 

We ended up walking as far as Trafalgar Square but decided to throw in the towel. There was no way we could find any decent spot to see the parade properly anywhere along the route.

‘We should have planned it better.’ Hubbie and I agreed as we trudged towards Green Park tube station in the hot afternoon sun. Needless to say, Bella was fast asleep on my lap as soon as we were on our way home by tube…

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

Focus!

But focus on what? I am so distracted.

Since the election, I am still finding it hard to actively engaging my thought on anything at length. It feels like I am in a weird bubble or having a cloud over my head, numbing my senses. 

Bobby, give me a shot of anesthetic on my head, I joked to my dentist. I thought that I left BBC at home but he had a ceiling mounted TV and it was showing BBC 24!

All the chatter and clatter from the Westminster, ugh!  They are just gibberish, aren’t they? How I wish if I could go into hibernation and wake up when everything was sorted for good. Because I have no predilection for watching yet more political cat fights by the usual suspects in the Commons. Have had enough of them already, haven’t we?

Anyway, I was given an all-clear from the dentist and hit the pavement around 10 o’clock, feeling very hungry because I skipped breakfast.

Hmm…, I need something comforting and reassuring…

At Benugo on Great Portland Street, I had a toasted sannie named Londoner. Between the two slices of granary bread I found egg, sausage and bacon. Very very moreish. 

After finishing my breakfast, I felt a little happier. This is it, I thought. It is because the time like this, I mustn’t let negativity which are prevalent recently to mar my life. Instead, I should focus on what are in front of me and appreciate them as they are.

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

The result

So, the ballots were casted and counted. What’s next? They have heard our voice, and what they gonna do about it? What are they discussing behind the closed doors?

The silence before all hell breaks loose is deafening, isn’t it? Finger pointing and beginning of a blame game. 

I hope they put the nation’s interest before their party politics. We need to unite for the goodness of the country!

Tear & smile

I was glued to the TV from 7 to 10 pm last night, watching One Love Manchester Concert on BBC. During the three hours, I felt all sorts of emotions, sadness, hope, anger, tenderness and frustration. 

The music was like ripples. Some of the numbers stirred up my feeling which I had been suppressing subconsciously because it was too depressing, and I felt really raw and wounded. Then, there were another songs which uplifted my mood and soothed the pain in my heart. Even though I was more than 43 miles away, I felt united with the audience and the performers at the concert. 

There are many people all over the world who wake up to their undeserved nightmare this morning due to terror attacks. Losing loved ones or recovering from the damages done physically or psychologically, for them, the days lie ahead of them must feel like dark and harrowing. We must never forget about the victims. But we also have to remember that there are people who are left to pick up the pieces and have to live on with a wounded heart. 

Love heals and hate hurts. Let’s not forget.

One Love Manchester, One Love London, One Love Britain & One Love Earth! They are my battle cry against the extremists…

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