5 Geological Wonders I Want To See

Sorry, sorry, sorry! Since I shuffled all of my scheduling to add in my 5 Things l Want To Do In Dublin post, I’ve been scrambling to keep up! Here you are, a few of weeks late, 5 Geological Wonders l want To See:

The Giant’s Causeway: These columns of basalt are actually quite common. Even so, they are an iconic image of travel and exploration (and Ireland); a hugely well-known wonder. I feel, as a sufferer of wanderlust, I should see it at least once.

Uluru: Another iconic travel image, this one with an interesting and somewhat controversial history. Sacred to the local Aboriginal culture, ownership of this huge sandstone formation and the surrounding lands has, over the year, caused friction between the Aboriginal populace and the Australian government. l would dearly love to tour Australia and this would definitely be on my planned route.

Via rplzzz

Via rplzzz

Stone Forests of the Yunnan Province: These limestone formations resembling a giant forest (apparently – l don’t see it) cover a massive area (400 square Kilometres) in Yunnan and have been considered, by some, the ‘First Wonder of the world ‘ since the Ming Dynasty. Supposedly you can find formations mimicking people, plants, and animals; It’s like a stone version of the cloud game!!

Danxia Landforms: Found in several provinces of china, this sandstone landform is the result of thousands of years of mineral deposits and sediment forming layers which, when eroded into canyons and cliffs, reveal stripes of variously coloured rock. So, basically, it’s naturally stripy rock; how awesome is that?


Pamukkale, Turkey: Pamukkale (pronounced pan-MOOK-kah-leh) translates from Turkish as ‘Cotton Fortress’; the awesome calcium travertines, formed by the cooling waters of this mineral bath-spa, certainly deserve such a title. There has been a spa on this site since Roman times, and many of the Roman buildings remain as ruins including the original pool which you can swim in. My inner historian is squealing in excitement just writing about it!

Well, what geological wonders have I missed? What would you love to see? Have you been to some of them? Let me know!


Sources (You didn’t think I knew all of that stuff without research… did you?)

Brosnahan, Tom. “Pamukkale, Turkey Guide.” Pamukkale, Turkey Guide. N.p., n.d. Web. 29 July 2014. <http://www.turkeytravelplanner.com/go/Aegean/Pamukkale&gt;.
Chapple, Amos, and Rex Features. “Colourful Rock Formations in the Zhangye Danxia Landform Geological Park.” The Telegraph. Telegraph Media Group, 2014. Web. 29 July 2014. <http://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/picturegalleries/9550531/Colourful-rock-formations-in-the-Zhangye-Danxia-Landform-Geological-Park.html?frame=2343145&gt;.
“Giant’s Causeway, Antrim, Northern Ireland (Causeway Coast and Glens).” Giant’s Causeway, Antrim, Northern Ireland (Causeway Coast and Glens). N.p., n.d. Web. 29 July 2014. <http://causewaycoastandglens.com/P2800-Giants-Causeway-Antrim-Northern-Ireland-Bushmills.aspx&gt;.
“Uluru History.” Uluru History. N.p., n.d. Web. 29 July 2014. <http://www.uluru.com/UluruHistory.html&gt;.



This is the fourth post of my 5 Things series. To check out the other posts or to have a say in what will be featured next visit my 5 Things page. 

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Excuses, again!

Well, my lovelies, it’s been nearly a month and I’ve yet again abandoned you to the sheer boredom of life without me!


Unfortunately, life just got to busy again and before I knew it… poof! It’s been ages since I posted and I’ve lost all my drafts. I’m really sorry, I’m clearly an awful person!


In all fairness, I do have several valid reasons: at first, I was trying to book my trip to Dublin (you’ll be able to read all about that here, eventually), then I was looking after a poorly cat (here), then I was in Dublin (here, here, here, etc.) and then I was prepping for and attending several interviews. So there you have it, genuine, solid excuses for my ignoring you guys.


I’m really sorry and I’ll get right on my new posts.


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Acne Control Regime and Product List

Skincare laid out!

Ok, fair warning here: this is gonna be a long, skincare related one!

I suffer from horrendous acne (I actually get a prescription solution to help control it), as it happens so does one of my friends. After a recent girls night in which included facials, she demanded from me a list of what we used and some notes on how to use it.

As I sat down and put pen to paper, it occurred to me that this wouldn’t make a half bad blog post, so here it is; a product list an how I use them in my skincare regime to help control my acne. Continue reading

Categories: Skincare/Cosmetics | Tags: , , , | 9 Comments

5 Things I Want To Do In Dublin

First, an apology. I’m really sorry for the late delivery of this post. Because I didn’t schedule this one in advance itdidn’t get written until this morning!

Now, on with the post! 5 Things I wantTo Do In Dublin:

Kayak the River Liffey: I discovered that you can do this on the Visit Dublin website, and it sounds awesome! It’s not likely to happen this coming trip though  – since, when I mentioned it to Lauren, I managed to elicit the same look she gets when bugs or spiders (or any other truly evil thing – like running) are mentioned!

See The Book Of Kells at Trinity College: The grounds at Trinity are an attraction in their own right, but it’s what’s inside that really interests me. Dating to c. 800 AD, the Book of Kells contains the four gospels of the New Testament (in Latin) surrounded by elaborate iuuminations that make what could, justifiably, be called ‘Just A Really Old Bible’ an unparallelled work of art. l studied it, briefly at university and would deary love to see the real thing.

Visit the Guiness storehouse: This is something of a tradition. I always visit a local brewery/maltings/alcohol museum if l can. In china I visited the Tsingtao Brewery, in Dublin l wanna see the Guiness storehouse. It stems from childhood holidays which weren’t complete without a tripfor dad to look at various fermenting grains… or cars.

Take in some live music in Temple Bar: This one’s in all the guidebooks, but for good reason. I would love to grab a pint and sit back to enjoy some live music – traditional or otherwise.

Go shopping in the Loft Market: Dublin markets are the stuff of shopping legend. Unfortunately, they are largely are an exclusively weekend affair, and I am only going to be in Dublin during the week on this trip. With that in mind, l stumbled upon the Loft Market, open every weekday but Monday. It’s described by Time Out Dublin as a New York City style designer marke, which sets an of my shopping spidey-senses tingling. Definitely want to go there!

What about you guys? Have you been to Dublin? Do you live there? What do you recommend doing while I’m there?

Let me know!


This is the third post of my 5 Things series. To check out the other posts or to have a say in what will be featured next visit my 5 Things page. 

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6 Things I Miss About China

Well I’ve been back in the UK now since last July, and despite what I expected there are things that I miss astronomically. There are more things than I could really count, and some I’m not sure I could even explain, but here are six of them just for the attention and pondering of you, my lovely (and extremely patient) readers:

  1. Efficient public transport: Where I live we have one, weekly bus and the trains are ALWAYS running late.
  2. My students: I miss Susan who I taught to “sign” her name first. I miss Cici who kept trying to teach me Chinese. I even miss the troublesome boy who climbed on tables just because I wasn’t looking!
  3. Decent shopping hours: In Weifang Starbucks was open 6am to 11pm every day (even Sunday!) and in Beijing shopping malls are open as late as midnight in some cases. It’s shopaholic heaven!
  4. Being able to easily call order to a class: I’ve been a Cover Supervisor back in the UK recently. What I wouldn’t give for that level of discipline…
  5. Lay’s exotic crisp flavours: Lay’s are what Walker’s are called everywhere except the UK (pretty much) but they do awesome flavours like Bolognaise, Lime, and even Cucumber. I love good old fashioned Cheese and Onion, but I do miss the more exotic flavours.
  6. A shop always being within walking distance: this may have been because I was living in quite a prosperous city, but there was always a shop close by, and it was great (especially when you run out of water/cereal/crisps etc.)!

What about you guys? Have any of you lived abroad? Are you back home now? What do you miss about those countries?

Let me know!!

Categories: Beijing, China 2013, Travel | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

IT’S MY BIRTHDAY! Also: New Hair & Holiday Plans

Happy birthday to me,

Happy birthday to me,

Happy birthday dear me-ee,

Happy birthday to me!


So, yes, I have nothing better to do at this moment in time (on my birthday – in case you missed that) than draft and post a blog entry. That actually says something about my life – I’m not entirely sure what though…


I do actually have a purpose for blogging today and it’s not just to irritate everyone whose birthday it isn’t: I have two pieces of news.

Continue reading

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5 Awesome Places That I’ve Already Been

Another short and sweet post just to put it out there!!

  1. China: Hello, have you seen my posts from last year?? I’m not saying anything else about China in this post!
  2. Paris: I love Paris. My French is atrocious, but as I’ve said before I love European continental cities, and you don’t get much more European than Paris. I love the bistros and the fact that you can get a glass of wine ANYWHERE.  I love the museums and the markets. I love the Paris-Plages in the summer months; and I adore sitting in the park at the centre of the Marais on a balmy summer evening as dusk creeps in and eventually getting ushered out by an irritated security guard trying to lock up! Of course, I also love DisneyLand… but that’s not quite as romantic sounding!!
  3. Florida: I’ve done some of the typical Florida touristy stuff, but I really want to go back; it’s going to take much more than a two week holiday to see all that Florida has to offer. I’ve done the Disney parks (EPCOT is by far the best), Discovery Cove (I swam with dolphins on my 21st birthday – it was amazing – I did also manage to sunburn my butt though, so maybe not my finest hour!) and Kennedy Space Centre (I tell everyone it was for my dad, but I was just as much a kid in a candy store as he was!!) and a few other, less epic, things, but there is still loads I haven’t done!!
  4. Pompeii: I visited the Bay of Naples with my University in my second year, I had to give a presentation on the Temple of Isis in Pompeii, but once that was done I spent the rest of the two days we had in the ruins wondering down small alleys, playing spot the famous graffiti with my friend Lauren, finding the famed brothel accidentally and climbing walls to see what was behind them. Unsurprisingly, when we got back to our hotel on both nights I was VERY dusty!!
  5. Turkey: I have some quite contrasting impressions of Turkey. On the one hand I spent a day in the ruins of Perge (not as intact as Pompeii, but damned impressive nonetheless), on the other I had an absolutely amazing (and luxurious) Turkish Bath. You can understand why I’m a bit confused…

So tell me you guys, what awesome places have you been?

Let me know.


This is the second post of my 5 Things series. To check out the other posts or to have a say in what will be featured next visit my 5 Things page. 

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10 Places I Want To Visit In The Next 10 Years

My eventual aim is to fill my passport(s) with visa stamps from all over the world.


When I’m old and grey, I want to keep my voided passports in a beaten up old tin in my kitchen draw. When my grandkids come over for a visit I’ll be able to pull out that worn and dented tin and from it will emerge my old passports; the gold foil on the front rubbed away from use, the pages stained and delicate with age, curled corners and bent spines testament to their travels – well loved and well used. For each stamp I will have a story; a tale of some exotic land with strange customs and alien tongues, that I will tell with such passion that I will inspire them to travel as I have. I want my passports to be the portal to those fantastic stories, stories that will be used to kindle and fan the flames of wanderlust in the next generation. I want that curiosity and wonder at the vastness of the world, that never-ending awe at just how much there is to see and do, to be my legacy. Continue reading

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Inelegant Sleeping Arrangements

For those of you who started following my blog purely because of photos of a certain cute, fluffy kitten, I can safely say that Bob is a kitten no more!


He also gets on a lot better with Jess these days (mostly).


So here you are a photo of the cute, fluffy, monster-sized tomcat that I live with; simultaneously lying on Jess, messing up my bed, moulting on my cream knitwear and performing some strange feline sleep-yoga. And I’m telling you this is NOT an action shot, I have two more of him in this very position… He’s genuinely sleeping like that!!!



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5 Events I Really Want To See

Hey Guys! This is going to be short and sweet as there’s not really much to say about this that the title doesn’t. So here you are, my lovelies, five events I would love to see:


  1. Venice Carnival – It will probably come as no surprise that I want to do the full carnival experience; costume, mask and ball tickets included!!
  2. Tokyo Cherry Blossom Festival(s) – this probably stems from my ongoing love affair with anime and manga (and the fact that my impressionable mind was exposed to Sailor Moon cartoons non-stop in the 90’s), but I love the idea and romance of the whole thing.
  3. The Rio Carnival – Similarly to the Venice Carnival, I’m attracted to the glitz and glamour and total immersion in a different culture for a time. To me it just screams fun.
  4. Dragon Boat Festival Races in China (and surrounding areas) – I have to say I was in China for the Dragon Boat Festival last year (it happened on my birthday!) but because of where I was located I didn’t really have a chance to see the races. It’s happening a little earlier this year (4th -6th June, I believe) and I won’t make it, but I do want to see the races one day.
  5. Edinburgh Military Tattoo – my parents have seen it and I’ve watched it on TV, but you lose a lot of the atmosphere through the lens of a camera (although you do stay considerably warmer).


So what events do you want to see? Have you seen any of my list? What did you think?

Let me know!

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