Time has slipped through my fingers this week. It’s already Monday but surely that can’t be right? If I spend all my energies imagining that it’s still Wednesday last week, will I be able to turn back time? Desperate times call for desperate measures. But as it turns out, I’m not so desperate after all so I’ll just take a little time out to reflect on those moments from last week instead…
So I’ve been pretty stressed out with my PhD recently; I won’t bore you with the details but suffice to say, I’m looking into reanalysing the bulk of my experimental data. This requires a complete rewrite of my previously employed algorithms so I’ve been spending the majority of my time over the last fortnight just coding and testing, coding and testing. It’s exhausting and I need quality time off in the evenings…
El Vino, Fleet Street
After a long day in the lab on Tuesday, I ended up at my new favourite low key, unpretentious, I-need-a-delicious-glass-of-wine bar, El Vino on Fleet Street. It’s this wonderful old fashioned wine bar with a long and interesting history in London (I literally just discovered this here) and an expansive quality wine list. This bar has an air of being sure of itself about it. It has walls littered with faded photographs and posters, empty wine bottles decorating high shelves, dark wooden tables, leather chairs and alcoves which all add to its old age atmosphere. I adore this establishment and cannot give it a higher recommendation for a quiet one!
Chinese Cricket Club
Just round the corner from El Vino, we went to the Chinese Cricket Club on a last minute tastecard booking. The place has such potential but was almost completely empty on this Tuesday Evening. It was a real shame but the atmosphere was lacking. The food however did redeem the place with some great fusion flavours offered on the menu. It really did hit the spot and bill was fine with a taste card discount (but would have been pricey without) so smiles all round.
M Raw, Bank
Wednesday as you know by now is a special day in my calendar on a weekly basis. The day reserved for a girls evening in town. This week was no exception with a trade up from wine to champagne with reservations at the very trendy M Raw in Bank. Bottomless champagne paired the 4 course meal as we discussed the role of women in society through history–from Virginia Woolf to the current BBC series, ‘The Ascent of Women’. More to come in my weekly #winewednesday post. If you have a chance, definitely check out the establishment. It has all the grandeur of fine dining, without the associated price tag. It’s a win-win!
When I started my PhD, conference seemed magical. It was that idea of having an intense concentration of incredible minds all working within a common subject area, discussing their ideas and challenges to find solutions whilst creating new collaborations and projects all in one place. It’s exciting to be submerged in this pool of intelligence, creativity and logic where individuals come together and thrive.
I always had these romantic notions about conferences, that image in my head of everyone there was a little zany and utterly besoted with science. And while some of that may be true, conferences are in fact a huge pressure. Time is precious, expecially when you’re tentatively reaching into the third year of your PhD. 2 whole days away from your usual routine feels taxing and even stressful. With this being said, Cambridge is a beautiful city and any excuse to go visit is a wonderful one.
So two days were spent cooped up in a stuffy lecture theatre where you concentrated on lecture after lecture, hour after hour. Several words must also be said about the evening 10th anniversary celebration of this particular conference–there was a jazz band, dancing, wine, St John College ale and finger foods. It was a delight. Science fuelled conversations were increasingly diverted to philosophy, popular culture and everything else under the stars! It was an absolute pleasure to attend.
Lahore Kebab House, Norbury
You’ll discover over time as I review the establishments I dine at, that I detest Indian (sub-Indian continental) restaurants in London. More specifically, I detest these restaurants in central London. Norbury, Tooting and further south however, the story changes dramatically. Lahore Kebab House is a great Pakistani establishment at the end of Norbury High Street. The staff are super friendly and attentive and the keema curry is to die for. One of the best I’ve tasted hands down. If you’re hunting for good curries, head out of London and venture down South for mouth-watering meals at bargain prices!
MS Society, Branch Social
This month’s social for MS sufferers, carers and families was the all-time favourite pamper day in which a number of therapies are offered ranging from Indian head massages down to reflexology. I was lucky enough to try out two holistic treatments for the first time:
- acupuncture; and
- bowen therapy.
I’m somewhat afraid of needles but wanted to give acupuncture a go. I’m not sure what I was thinking when I agreed to it through. I got hot and sweaty just thinking about those needles and when they went into my wrists and feet, my palms became moist as well–it really wasn’t for me!
Bowen on the other hand left me feeling incredible. As if I was floating. It’s a techninque in which gentle pressure is applied in Bowen’s unique sets of rolling-type moves in specific point over the body to stimulate the muscles and soft tissues. I was left with a sense of total stress release. I couldn’t be happier!
(Find out more about the MS Society)
Happy Birthday Dada
My Dada (granddad in Gujarati) turned 80 at the weekend! While he may be old, he’s super high-tech (or likes to think he is). With his iPhone 6+, iPad, 70″TV amongst his collection, I feel like I’m definitely behind the curve but its times like this weekend when I spend an hour trying to explain the difference between getting internet through a WiFi connection or through your mobile provider that I remember his real age 🙂 !
That’s all from me for now. I’ll be posting up more in depth reviews of the places I’ve hit this week soon so follow my blog if you want to read more. I also want to start visiting exhibitions / galleries / museums more often so if you have any recommendations, I’d love to hear from you!
Have a great week.