I have had an incredible two weeks at home in the UK. I have been so busy but here are some highlights:
Christmas Day and weekend with my family
In my family we always go to my Buba’s (Grandma in Yiddish) for Christmas Day. However, for us it’s not Christmas, (we are Jewish, although not very religious) instead it is my Uncle and Aunt’s Wedding Anniversary. We still have a mountain of food and too much dessert and cake for us all to handle but we just don’t do the Christmas presents. If we do get something it is for Chanukah. Anyway, the day itself was lovely, I got to catch up with some of my family and play with my (not a baby anymore, she is seven) baby cousin. My parents and I always stay over at my Buba’s flat, so on Boxing day we helped clean up and lazed about watching TV until the evening where we went to The Apollo Theatre in Shaftesbury Avenue and watched Peter Pan Goes Wrong! I saw The Play That Goes Wrong last April and Peter Pan Goes Wrong is done by the same company – Mischief Theatre. I absolutely loved The Play That Goes Wrong and Peter Pan Goes Wrong did not let me down. It was fabulous and I laughed a lot. It is definitely a must see!
My Christmas weekend ended with me taking my seven year old cousin ice-skating for the first time at Alexandra Palace. She was quite scared to start with but within half an hour to 45 minutes she was skating/wobbling around on her own! I felt so proud of her and she had a brilliant time!
Berlin with Jocy
Two days and one night in Berlin for the Christmas Markets. I had doubts that we would get everything we wanted to do done. But we did! We visited four markets:
- Weihnachtszauber am Gendamenmarkt (Christmas Magic at Gendamenmarkt)
- Berliner Weihnachtszeit am Roten Rathaus (Berlin Christmastime at Red City Hall)
- Weihnactmarkt am Gedachtniskirche (Christmas Market at the Memorial Church)
- Winterwelt am Potsdamer Platz (Winter World at Potsdamer Platz)
Each Market had their own quirks to distinguish themselves from each other. So Weihnachtszauber am Gendamenmarkt had a stage set up and live music was played which you could hear whilst wandering around the stalls. This market also had a couple of indoor sections if you feeling a bit chilly. Berliner Weihnachtszeit am Roten Rathaus had a ferris wheel, an ice rink, and generally looked very traditional. I thought this market was quite suited to children as there were things to ‘do’. Weihnactmarkt am Gedachtniskirche was another traditional market. I didn’t feel it distinguished itself as much as the two previous markets mentioned did, but it did have a lovely atmosphere and was right next to a church. The final market Winterwelt am Potsdamer Platz had most of the market stalls closed by our visit, we were there 28th and 29th December but the majority of the stalls shut on the 26th December. However, there were still a few stalls open, mostly food, but you could try going down a slippery snowy slope on a large tyre! The one thing all the markets had in common was the food and drink! Every market was selling Bratwurst sausages, Gluhwein (mulled wine), chocolate covered fruit, caramelised nuts, stollen, strudel, and more! It was all delicious and I think we spent more money on food than anything else!
For breakfast/brunch on Tuesday morning we had pre-booked going to the revolving restaurant in the Television Tower! It was definitely worth it. You pay for entry to the top of the tower and then you pay for your breakfast separately. It came to just over 30€ each, including entry and food, I know it sounds expensive but it was totally worth it! We had lovely food; bread basket with honey and jam, cheese and meat, scrambled eggs, yoghurt with granola and half a grapefruit. And then on top of that you have views across all of Berlin as you slowly revolve! This was brilliant for us as we were only in Berlin for a couple of days, it meant we could see a lot, albeit at a distance, in a short space of time.
I absolutely loved my couple of days in Berlin with Jocy. We have been on two ‘trips’ together before. I don’t call them holidays because they were organised trips and were quite heavy and emotional at points. One was to Israel which was amazing and was the reason Jocy and I met, but it had some very emotional moments. The other trip was to Poland where we spent our time in many concentration camps and learning more about what happened in them. Again, this was quite heavy and extremely emotional. So I would argue that this trip to Berlin was our first holiday together, and I hope it is the first of many more as it seems we are suited to travelling together!
New Year with Becca and Charlotte
New Years Eve was wonderful. I haven’t seen my friend Becca for 4 months and haven’t seen Charlotte for even longer as she went away travelling before I left for Spain. So needless to say it was brilliant to see them both again, and Charlotte brought her friend Emily who she has been travelling with! The four of us saw in the New Year at Becca’s house with an Indian takeaway, cake, homemade ice-cream and of course wine! I couldn’t have thought of a nicer way to spend it. I am not one to go out partying on New Year, I think it is far nicer to spend it with people you actually care about, where you can chat and catch up, especially if, like me you havent seen your friends for ages.
I have also decided that this year I am going to start a year of daily videos. I did one for the year of 2014 and love watching it back! I had 2015 off and have already started filming for the daily videos of 2016.
You can have a watch of my year of 2014 here!