Friday, 23 May 2014

Miranda's United

Well this week has certainly been a busy one!

I was very excited to be driving to Gloucestershire to meet my new friend Miranda de Barra for the first time. As mentioned in a previous blog post, she was giving a talk and I was also asked to say a few words. 

Its 200 miles from my house to Miranda's house. I stopped on the way at my favourite farm shop ever - Daylesford Organic - for lunch. I went to school round there so lots of the roads / villages are familiar to me. There's something so liberating about being able to jump in the car, tap a postcode into the sat nav and get from one place to another without a glitch. 

Lunch (picture doesn't do it justice):

Yummy potato wedges and three even yummier salads:

marinated courgete, pasta, Parmesan, lemon, olive oil, mint
asparagus, pea, feta, cannellini beans, lemon, mint
quinoa, chorizo, butternut squash, chickpeas, lemon, coriander

My talk went very well - it wasn't recorded, which was a relief as my voice slightly cracked at the end as I got a bit emotional. I wore my special MIRANDA T Shirt. I got a big laugh when I told them what my definition of FINE was. This is what I said. So you can see my attempt at stigma stamping / raising a few issues around mental illness. 

Miranda de B spoke BRILLIANTLY - taking us through the highs and lows of her bipolar disorder. So confident and well-prepared. I am in awe of her.

I was very sad to leave the glorious Cotswolds - but stopped at Oxford on my way home to visit my old PA college. Their new premises is incredible and their courses are highly recommended now that university is so expensive and no more likely to help a young person find a job. 

Couldn't resist a trip to the Covered Market for a Moo Moos milkshake - you name the chocolate bar or sweet and they can turn it into a delicious milkshake. I had Milk Choc KitKat - so yummy!

Lunch al-frescco or should I say al-carro:

My route was: Suffolk, Oxford, Woodstock, Kingham, Tewksbury, Dymock... and looked something like this (literally one side of the UK to the other!):

All in all - a very happy couple of days. 400 miles, 2 days, 1 amazing sat nav, 0 traffic jams (not even on the M25 - I KNOW!)

Already looking forward to my next trip. And giving the next talk..

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