I do dash back to London from time to time to see my favourite experts in specialist fields, hair colourist, hair stylist, eyebrow threader, facialist, dermatologist, dentist, hygenist, homeopath, naturopath and of course my favourite friends my partners in crime, my clubbing mates, (yes I can still dance), my gossip accomplices, my girlie friends who I love and adore and share all secrets with, and I usually have a rigid schedule of appointments with the specialist team to keep me gorgeous and groomed, followed by lunch, dinner and tea dates, slotted in between visiting my favoured homes of luxury wear and goods (shops), and this last visit was no different.
On my visits back I'm always asked if I miss living in London and all it has to offer, and being such a lover of all things beautiful, soft, silky, and desirable some of my friends are doubtful of my conversion to country life. It is true that all roads for extravagance and opulence lead to London (when in England), but do those roads lead to happiness, a feeling of well being, calmness and peace, and I must report to you that they do not, certainly on a few weekends before Christmas when actually all the roads in London lead to sheer chaos, misery and frustration. Even in my spirited little clubman where I have a music system to match any nightclub and the interior mood lights to add ambiance, I could feel the familiar twitch of stress in my shoulders as I sat with other motorists along the Marylebone Road, so to pass the time I observed the cars around me, as one would expect a good selection of German motor cars dotted amongst large spotless 4x4's which is quite hilarious as I can't quite see the necessity for these enormous beasts of the road here in London when they are clearly of no use at all unless you were to indulge in a little off road driving along Marylebone High Street or St Johns Wood High Street to avoid the dreadfully parked cars or potholes, and they are immaculate, which with all the rain we've been having is astonishing, perhaps there is no mud in London because every single car in my part of the countryside, whatever the model, is completely mud spattered.
However, road and transport issues aside, London was looking resplendent with the magic of Christmas dust sprinkled all around, twinkly lights, delightful window displays, enticing end of year smells, cinnamon, frankincense, and mir mingled with sausage roll scents from The Ginger Pig(were the three kings lurking nearby) and as I drifted down the streets my senses savoured all the sights, sounds and smells. With my list held firmly in my Hermes gloved clad hand, I entered shops hopeful of purchasing gifts for my loved ones, and full of childlike excitement I smiled at sales girls all lined up waiting for me to make my choices, but they did not smile back, they looked bored and glum. I smiled at some of my fellow shoppers and sadly they did not smile back either. What is wrong with everyone, this is a joyful time of year. My girlfriend I met for lunch at The Providores explained it to me, I was looking at everything through the eyes of a visitor, these jaded shoppers are simply numb to the whole event now, living with it all day in day out, they just don't see it anymore, it has become a habit, a duty, a reflex almost, they just don't appreciate it.
Well I will never allow others gloom to effect me so off I skipped from lunch and continued to smile at everyone, and eventually I found people began to smile back, I hummed Christmas tunes to myself and they smiled more, they probably thought I was off my head, but if it brings a smile, I am delighted. I made some gratifying purchases and even managed to slot in a little trip to Laduree in Burlington Arcade for some Macaroons for my small tribe at home, followed by a quick whirl around the most beautiful shop in the world (really) Fortnum and Mason where I bought myself a small trinket of the shiniest kind for my ears.
I loaded all my goodies into the dinky boot of my car and headed out of London along the A40 towards home, and as the lights of London grew dim behind me I realised I had enjoyed my visit but was so very glad to be heading away from the mayhem of London and towards the harmony of my lovely new home and to my very handsome husband who (secretly) I had missed and my crazy brood of boys, who on arrival did not disappoint me as the eldest had brought home 2 (large) friends for the night who were found delving in the pantry for food, and asking me if we had some beer in. Oh it's good to be home...... If you fancy a bite in Marylebone the Providores wil fill you up nicely, and if you feel the need for a funky little motor I recommend a gorgeous Mini to whiz about in.