Cliffs and hikes

Today was another beautiful day:



Absolutely beautiful. So after a lovely omelette for my breakfast (back at the same place as yesterday), I headed for the Cliff Walk. This is a pathway that goes along the coast, passing some of the most beautiful mansions in Newport. So, predictably, here come some more photos from the shiny new camera…



A rather specific disclaimer…



The Breakers – generally accepted as the most beautiful of the mansions:


20130330-221026.jpg (an attempt at an arty photo there…).

From there (the southern end of the walk was damaged in the hurricane, so is closed while the rebuilding is going on) it was back to the hotel via the Elms…


Which is, as it turns out, a bit odd. It’s based on 18th century French styles, but is relatively new, so felt very strange compared to the European houses I’m used to seeing. But it was very impressive and beautiful.

Then it was actually back to the hotel to relax for a while, before getting some takeout from the same place as last night. And on the way I practiced some more sunset photos…




I am going to miss this place…

Perfect day

Today was gorgeous. Proof:


Amazing. Breakfast, courtesy of a recommendation from a couple I met at dinner last night, who were, by coincidence, in the same breakfast place when I arrived, was fabulous:


Pecan pancakes with bacon and maple syrup, with fresh orange juice. Yum! The place is called Franklin Spa – looks like a bit of a dive, but the food is divine. I may be going back tomorrow…

After some exploring, I wandered back to the hotel for some recharging (both my feet and my camera) before heading to the Newport Marriott Spa for a lovely hot stone massage. And some more photography…


Feeling very relaxed, it was dinner time by the time I managed to get up again. I headed to a Mexican place called Diego’s, which was, sadly, fully booked. So I cheated and got takeout – fish tacos and rangoons, which were gorgeous! And it meant I could take photos of the sunset:


And ask people to take pictures of me, just to prove I am actually here…:


Then take more photos…:



And now I am off to bed! I could get used to this…

Welcome to Newport

So, first off, pedicures are, apparently, awesome. I wasn’t convinced at all, but my landlady convinced me to give it a go and I am a total convert! With purple finger- and toe-nails… For my holidays, of course!

After doing a few hours of work this morning to make sure I was finished for the weekend (apparently irrelevant as it turns out, since the deadline is now next week rather than tomorrow… But at least it is off the table for this weekend!

It is about 70 miles from Boston to Newport. Ergo, kiddies, it is important to have the right music access, and to not have a large drink of water before leaving. I achieved one of those, through the driving playlist on my iPad. Which is, as it turns out, pretty darn great if I do say so myself.

The journey was interesting for several reasons:

1.) Rhode Island is very pretty – driving over the two bridges across to Newport was amazing, and really special;

2.) There was an incident on the other side of the road, leading to massive queues on the northbound carriageway. In true Michael McIntyre style, I spent the rest of their queue feeling very smug and trying not to gloat that I was doing 75 while they… weren’t…; and

3.) Total number of numpties seen reversing down the hard shoulder because they had slightly overshot and missed their exits : two. TWO!! Seriously…

After checking into my waterfront hotel room (my room is about 16 feet from the marina) I pottered off to dinner at a restaurant called “The Black Pearl” (destiny? I think so…). After some of the best clam chowder I have ever had (on a par with Legals… Seriously good!) I had a portion of sea scallops with rice, broccoli, mushrooms and bacon. A. Maze. Ing. Highly recommended.

Anyhew, I’m in my hotel, sitting on my king sized bed watching back to back episodes of Castle. This is, in fact, the life.

Holiday time!

First off, kudos to me for writing holiday rather than vacation. After six months of harassment, the Brit is holding on to the vocabulary…

Secondly, well, it’s almost holiday time. I have to log on tomorrow morning to follow up some points. I am hoping that this will be a half hour job, meaning I can then leave my laptop in JP while I gallivant off to Newport, Rhode Island, for a long weekend. Keep everything crossed.

Tonight I had my first taste of something rather lovely. Three words. Three little words. Boston. Restaurant. Week. Amazing. We went to a place called Sorellina. Seriously, look it up. I had an arugula salad (sorry, rocket, dammit I slipped), followed by lamb bolognaise, then a chocolate pudding. And the portions were “fancy”, i.e. small, so the damage to the diet was contained. There was even some very nice red wine that I can’t remember the name of…

Anyhew, it’s off to bed for me. Tomorrow the blog will come direct from the seaside, so contain your excitement for the next 24 hours. Personally I’m counting down to my hot stone massage – the one in Florida seems a very long time ago…

The countdown…

… Has officially begun. And about time too, my brain is losing information all over the place, and I am desperate for a rest.

Today there was a woman carrying a dog in a coat on the T. As in the dog had a coat on. A fluffy one. I shouldn’t be surprised, the other week I saw a woman pushing a buggy which had a cat in it…

Only in America.

Lazy days

Today was the ultimate in laziness. I spent about four hours on Skype in total, did two loads of laundry, tidied and cleaned my room, and packed up two parcels to be sent to the UK tomorrow. But not once did I leave the house… Frankly, an excellent way to celebrate the near end of busy season!

Anyway, it’s back to work (with, I hope, longer posts) from tomorrow… Until Thursday anyway, when I’m off down to Newport for my long weekend! Can’t wait…


Today was great. I did boot camp, a trip to Trader Joe’s, a chat with a lovely friend from home, tidied and cleaned, and started packing for the trip on Thursday!

And now I am off to bed to get the best run at my one lie in of the week…


Weekends are wonderful things. Even if you have to do little bits of work during them, they still present awesome opportunities for doing exciting things. Like cleaning your room, for example. Or doing laundry. Or going to Trader Joes to do some grocery shopping. Going to boot camp and yoga classes is another big plus, as is the ability to actually Skype or call people at sensible times of day.

Of course, there’s also the option of going to the cinema on a Sunday afternoon, or going out for dinner and drinks on Friday evenings. Where you may or may not have lobster Mac and cheese with one glass of red wine, followed by a Cosmopolitan in a bar and then realise just how low your alcohol tolerance as become… Oh dear!


Phew. Things have picked up. Work has exploded a bit, with one sane client, one that is gearing up to complete next week (all fine except for having to chase cash confirmations…) and the good old massive one trying to lock down Q1. Exhausting.

And it’s snowing again. After having to chip frozen snow off the car this morning, it is getting vexing. If spring could arrive, that would be amazing…