Blogiversary!!!!!!!!!!!

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Last week this Blog turned one!!! And in typical fashion I’ve only just got round to celebrating this momentous event. Started on a diabolical whim, I certainly would not have predicted that one year on I would still be writing for this fine publication. Let alone that some people would have actually bothered to read it. To all you wonderful people that have read commented and seemingly enjoyed my random musings, I truly cannot thank you enough! It has been an absolute joy to witness this half-baked idea rise to the lofty heights of a fluffy Victoria sponge. Admittedly in the last six months my posts have become rather sporadic but I solemnly swear that in the coming months I’ll pull up my socks and get back to blogging form.  In the meantime I hope you will join me in celebrating this anniversary dear reader and by spontaneously breaking into dance to this awesome tune from Kool and the Gang. Now that I’ve finished getting my groove on around my living room, allow me to present…

My Top 5 Moments of the Blogging Year

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I think it’s safe to say that epic feats of daring do have been few and far between this year. Nevertheless I think I made up for this in one fell swoop, by falling out of a plane in the most awkward manner imaginable. Against all odds I loved every second of this experience. Read on here!

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The Harry Potter studio tour quite simply set my imagination ablaze this year. From the moment I found myself standing in the great hall of Hogwarts I was off in a world of my own. I left pretending to ride an invisible broomstick, which says it all really. Read on here!

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I had a delightful moment of Zen in the Kyoto Garden this year. Located within Holland Park this Japanese garden may be tiny but it is absolutely stunning and I’m very pleased with some of the photographs I got on my trip. Read on here!

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I love those random moments in adventures that you could never have predicted beforehand. I was dumbfounded this year, when swimming in ice cold waters on Hampstead Heath I suddenly found myself being lapped by old age pensioners. However my absolute highlight of the year came when some lovely people ensured I had a blooming marvellous time playing crazy golf. Read on here!

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A surreal neon dreamscape where you can sip a coffee, I was truly blown away by the spectacle that is God’s Own Junkyard. Located in the back of beyond (Sorry Walthamstow), this is the very definition of a hidden gem. Read on here!

So that in a nutshell marks the end of my first year of Blogging. Here’s to many more years of London, Whisky, and Adventure.

Oh and to talking even more Bollocks!!!

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A Magical Escape! The Harry Potter Studio Tour

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I like to think that all of us at some point each day wish to capture that incredible sense of wonder that somehow was always present during one’s childhood. The sense, that if you put your mind to it anything is possible. The feeling, that on the whole life is unquestionably good. The foolhardy bravado by which one entered into every endeavour, ‘when I grow up I’m going to be a guitar playing rock star, astronaut, vet’. And last but by no means least the fact that the vast majority of things seemed to quote Mr Spock ‘Fascinating’. In this setting where the most mundane of things are so alive, one finds that a good story is positively spellbinding. Last week I got reacquainted with my childhood sense of wonder with a trip to the Harry Potter Studio’s.

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It was blooming obvious that I was going to love this experience but even I was taken aback by how much I loved it. It was truly a wonder to my mind to suddenly and somewhat inexplicably find myself standing in the great hall of Hogwarts. I was literally walking through a museum of a place I had imagined a bazillion times as a child. I was giddy with joy but more than that, I felt shivers going down my spine as my brain miraculously converted so many fond and long forgotten memories into a single moment. It was quite simply special.

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As one went round the studio one got a sense of the incredible effort and work that went into each set. It was amazing to behold such delightful craftsmanship that in some cases were only on screen for a few minutes and yet had no doubt taken many hours to create. In the films these props were like sand mandalas that had gone unnoticed by me. To think that all these dazzling designs had come about due to one person who was delayed on a train scribbling down an idea, truly is a wonder. The fact that so much joy resulted for so many people after is something one does not want to find a word for.

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Unfortunately at the end of this article, I must allow a little cynicism to intrude, and that is by imparting a brief warning that the people selling this experience know they have a bottle of liquid luck on their hands. I wouldn’t go as far as to say that the prices are exorbitant but they are very pricey, a packed lunch is a must.  However I think if you’re a fan then it really will be an experience you’ll always treasure. I remember when I saw the last Harry Potter film, at the end a complete stranger behind me said in a sombre voice ‘there goes my childhood’. The words really resonated with me at the time, but the fact is you can always pop back if you want.

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