Three Six Five

NOTE: the reading of this entry will be much more appreciated by first listening to the beautiful Auld Lang Syne (which one day can should have its own post) via this memorable scene from Sex and the City.  Done?  OK, you may now read on.

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Reflecting on the year that has just been. The Queen’s annual Christmas Day speech, on the BBC (3pm local time). It’s not Christmas without it.

HAPPY NEW YEAR lovely readers!

I hope that you have all had a wonderful holiday and are feeling rejuvenated for the year ahead. Alas, the blogging world did not end on 21/12/12 and our www-dot-com friendship continues (wink, wink). I am truly grateful for each and everyone of you and your loyalty.  I know that I have not been the most entry-producing of bloggers, but believe you me, I do want that to change for 2013, and it is one of my New Year’s Resolutions (NYR).

Although the ‘New Year’ is traditionally a time for resolutions,  I for one have normally not been a NYR type of a gal.  Mainly, because I have always associated ‘September’ as the beginning of the year.  However, I heard of possibly one of the best ideas for a resolution that has left me inspired ever since, and I wanted to share it with you.  It is definitely not your typical ‘eat less, exercise more’ kind of a NYR that usually fails by, say, week 2.  So here it goes.

A friend of a friend decided that for his NYR, he would try something ‘new’ every day for a year.  OK, re-read previous sentence.  Creative, no?  Well, some of the things included on his list were:

  • To read a newspaper he had never read before
  • To play his guitar by the river
  • To take a homeless person out for lunch
  • To do his weekly grocery shop in Harrods (just the once!)

These are just four out of the 365 ideas that he came up with and I can only imagine what else was on his list.  I just LOVED, LOVED, LOVED this idea when I first heard about it and it made me think about the importance of trying more new things in life;  even something as simple as taking a left turn, where I might normally take a right.  

So for thinking outside of the NYR box and coming up with 365 new ideas, this NYR will be my first ‘it’ for 2013. Here’s to a blessed year!

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An Inspired Generation

If you know me, you know that Florence is the love of my life, but London is my LOVE (Confused? Don’t worry!). And now, I love London even more than ever before (if that was even possible!). The reason? The Olympics in London 2012.

The Olympic rings on Tower Bridge, a.k.a. ‘the gates to London’.

World Peace on Regent St. (front row): Bulgaria (Europe), Burkina Faso (Africa), Burundi (Africa), Cambodia (Asia), Cameroon (Africa) and Canada (North America)

SO, TAKE A DEEP BREATH, AND CHECK OUT THESE HIGHLIGHTS FROM LONDON 2012:

Inspire a Generation‘, the 100 day countdown, The Olympic Torch here, there and everywhere to sleeping safely at The Tower of London after its dramatic arrival, The Olympic rings on Tower Bridge, a quirky and fun opening ceremony a la Danny Boyle (Beijing 2008’s will always be in a league of its own), 007 and the Queen, the  very original steel and copper Thomas Heatherwick-designed cauldron lit by the ‘next generation’, the best logo…EVER!, the hippest font on fantastic pink signage, the cutest mascots (looove Wenlock and Mandeville!), the most historic and picturesque venues, Mo Farah’s double,  Usain Bolt’s double double, Jessica Ennis’ gold at the Heptathlon, Michael Phelps as the most decorated Olympian of all time, South Africa’s Oscar Pistorius a.k.a. the fastest man with no legs running against Bolt, Tom Daley’s splash in the pool after his bronze win, the Italian swimmers lovebirds Filippo Magnini and Federica Pellegrini making out on the tube, Andy Murray‘s first championship win, Bradley Wiggins’ Tour de France win to Olympic gold, Stephen Kiprotich’s marathon gold and Uganda’s first medal in 40 years, the first  ‘WOMEN’S’ Olympics (36% of medals won by Team GB were by women, Saudi Arabia’s first women delegation at the Olympics, women’s boxing debut as an Olympic event, etc.), the most user-friendly website (and that is coming from me!), empty seats and sellout crowds, free tickets to London schools, tickets ‘for all’ at £20.12…

OK, take another breath and stay with me!

Stella McCartney for Adidas‘ Team GB (individually fitted uniforms for ALL Team GB athletes, years in the making) to Giorgio Armani‘s Team Italia and Ralph Lauren‘s Team USA,  a great Athletes’ Village (the best one yet according to athletes), Aquatics Centre by Zaha Hadid, The Orbit by Anish Kapoor, the Badminton scandal, 70,000 incredible volunteers a.k.a. ‘the face of the games’, a secure and safe games with gratitude to the army, crowds moving fluidly at every event, a very friendly and fun atmosphere (GB fans cheering on even for other countries), Boris Johnson’s contagious enthusiasm, no congestion on the tube and beyond, the most environmentally-friendly Olympics ever (stadium made of previously used materials, basketball court de-assembled to be re-used, possibly in Rio), The Spice Girls’ reunion at the closing ceremony, and on and on and on. .. ‘An Inspired Generation’ indeed. Mission accomplished 007. Overall, a very priceless ‘it’.

You rock London and you did it with style! And now, the best for last: Paralympics, you are next!

What were your memorable moments of London 2012? Let me know if I missed anything!

More Flags on Regent St.: Norway (Europe), Oman (Asia), Pakistan (Asia) and Palau (Australia / Oceania)

All Photographs via Me