I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: `Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed….
Percy Bysshe Shelley
Just don’t lose your head (Sorry)
and make sure to have fun with it.
Hey-How about that last episode tonight?
What the… :(
Still, we must soldier on. We’re British after all (caught up in the show much??)
Try to have a good week all the same.
(Buttons top photo, my own. Green desk photo via Pinterest)
So, I sneaked away for a quick trip to NY this week.
Didn’t even bring a camera, just my iPhone and walking shoes.
It was, after all, Serious Sale Season.
I kept my packing to bare minimum carry-on by fed-exing my coats and boots to the hotel beforehand. So much easier then schlepping heavy bags and worrying about them getting lost or stolen, which has happened to us on more than one occasion. I brought a pre-printed return slip for homeward shipping. Done & done.
We took in a play the first night, which I didn’t entirely love so I’m not going to mention the name. I think people in the theatre work way too hard to have amateur critics critique them, don’t you?
We had a couple of splendid dining experiences, including one night at “Eleven Madison Park”, mentioned in a previous post and listed in my slow-to-update “Travel” tab
Palate cleansers of heavily marinated diced apples, Apple Jack bourbon, and some molecular hijinks being prepared in the kitchen at “Eleven Madison Park”
and then there was the wild mushroom and poached egg pizza at “ABC Kitchen“
This was my second visit to this really fun & buzzy Jeans George affiliated restaurant and I would highly recommend it.
I also enjoyed cocktails one night with “Habitually Chic“‘s Heather Clawson at “Bar Pleiades” in the Surrey Hotel. The rich, delicious concoction sporting a dense head of foamy condensed coconut milk above was called a”Thai-somethingorother”. The perfect libation to evoke the warmth of the tropics on a frigid NY night. We were sitting beside Goop Senior, Blythe Danner, who looked quite fabulous, although I’m sure Gwyneth will be letting herself go all to hell any day now. I can just feel it.
If you haven’t already checked out Heather’s new book “Creativity at Work” you really should. A thoughtful compilation of creative souls in their work environments, with beautiful photos and very down-to-earth introductions by Heather, as well as inspiring interviews with each subject. A perfect gift or addition to your own library; here my copy (bought the day before Hurricane Sandy hit on my last trip to NY) sits on the living room table this Christmas.
As always, walking and window gazing through the streets of Manhattan never disappoints.
I scoped these massive antique crystal urns lit from within on Madison Ave. I’d love to know their origin. Even better, I’d love to see them used now in an entirely modern space. Martyn Bullard would probably know just how to do them justice.
I dreamt and drooled through the recently opened Christian Liaigre flagship store on the upper east side.
Just give me one of everything, thank you.
and snapped this cute window at Jo Malone, really as a reference for a friend who is opening a tea salon in India! Swoon.
With my good friend Patty, whose hand I’m employing here for scale, I found a wine glass in Bergdorf Goodman that had my name written all over it. (back off Andrew!)
We had lunch in Bergdorf’s Kelly Wearstler designed restaurant which is usually delicious and ripe for people watching.
Somehow I always end up standing in front of the lady’s room mirror, ever so slightly lifting the sides of my face up.
I stayed at The Mark Hotel where, as long time readers are aware, my love of black & white stripes has been applied with reckless abandon.
The best part of The Mark experience? The Jeans Georges restaurant room service!
Rushing into the lobby one day, I humiliatingly tossed a warm hello to a lady I was so sure I knew (who then asked my name and we both drew a blank ) only to realise 1/2 way up the elevator she was a NYC realtor from a reality show my husband watches. Upon returning from dinner the same night, Sonja fill-in-the-name, from “Housewives of NY” was standing at the entrance and let’s just say Sonja had been enjoying more than a few cocktails. Ouch. But then I guess you don’t end up on reality TV by being a wallflower.
The Mark hotel (photos from my Instagram)
So, a little food & drink, a spot of shopping & people watching, a drop of culture and the company of loved ones- a perfect week in NY.
and least we forget (azziff) ‘Downton Abbey’ tomorrow!
Lady Mary at the train station bids adieu to Cousin Matthew
And I must also board a train to distant lands…
(after a plane, a car, then another plane, and one more car, but those bits aren’t so romantic)
I’m off to Sri Lanka and Burma (Myanmar) with a girlfriend for 3 weeks!!
Cousin Matthew and Lady Mary say good-bye
but it could just as well be my husband seeing me off
(after he catches his breath getting all my bags into the car)
I’m quite beside myself with excitement and slightly overwhelmed at what’s involved in leaving home & hearth for 3 whole weeks.
Packing is the least of it.
No, it SO isn’t, but I’ve always wanted to say that.
One MIGHTY BIG concern is the fact that I’m going to be missing the last 3 episodes of Downton Abbey, including the 2 hour Christmas Special!
I’m afraid if I do have internet access I’m going to get ‘spoilers’ coming at me left and right.
The Husband’s never been great at keeping secrets either, which means he might be banned from watching until I return.
I’ve recorded this for him as a warning reminder;
Will they get back together?
Will the cheeky chauffeur have his way with her Ladyship?
Is Robert really going to leave Downton to be in the employ of such a nouveau riche bounder?
Meanwhile, I’m going to miss my favourite character
but I’m slightly worried about the glint he’s getting in his eye when talking to the new maid…
Hmmm- and who might that new precocious parlormaid be??
Impostor or the real deal?
And if dead cousin Gordon or whatever his name is can just waltz up from The Titanic’s watery depths, albeit burned beyond recognition and with an American accent, to crash the party, why can’t our favourite Turkish delight rise stiffly (no pun intended) from his grave to make a repeat performance??
Who amongst us would mind?!
oh here, let me get that mud for you with the warm edge of the lace hankie I keep tucked just inside my heaving bodice.
and while we’re at it…
Is it just me, or is Lady Mary’s fiancé Sir Richard Carlisle not the love child of Richard Chamberlain and Peter Beard?
Sir Richard (Iain Glen)
and Peter Beard
Separated at birth, no??
Is the treacherous Thomas softening slightly this season?
I do believe I’ve almost caught a glimmer of a smidgen of a smile once or twice.
I might I need to ask Cousin Matthew who followed me on Twitter recently
Although he’s not exactly the chattiest follower on Twitter.
Perhaps the paralysis is migrating upwards…
Hey! Matthew! WAKE UP
.In any case,
Cocktail napkins from Rue de Lillie Antiques, Summerland, CA.
Robert: “You know, there is nothing more ill-bred than to steal other people’s servants.”
In honor of my favourite show, I’m sharing my bells once more…
Found years ago in London
Traveled across the seas to America
To live silently ever after in my kitchen in Sun Valley, Idaho.
Imagine the stories they could tell.
And how does One feel about Madame MacClaine joining the cast next Season?!
Is there really room for two Divas?!
Who is your favourite character?
Are you enjoying the second season as much as the first?
PS. I hope to be able to post and keep in touch on my travels, but it’s rather a whirlwind itinerary and I’m not sure how available internet access will be.
I’ll try to check in on FB & Twitter
(It’s always been my dream to “Tweet” from Mandalay )
If you haven’t done so already, you might like to sign up for my email alerts at the top of this page to stay connected.
(don’t forget to click on the ‘confirm’ button you will be sent-it takes 1 second)
** Hoarder Alert; It’s been 29 years since my last visit to “Ceylon” but I saved this 10 rupee bill (circa 1979) knowing that someday, I would return.