SummerTime... and the Livings Easy... in the UK
With the close of my contract position at the end of June, I had a summer full of travel. After a brief stint in San Francisco, I was off to the UK for the wedding of one of my closest friends. The whole trip was filled with love, joy, and of course a bit of pain.🥳
First Few Days of London-Town
I arrived a few days before the wedding and stayed at a spot right on the water in Battersea. What I did not know before arrival? It was right next to the F*cking Helioport! so my first few days were spent like this:🤪
Was that King Charles? Or a Foreign Prince? Or Celebrity? Probably not... but it was fun to pretend. I also met the bride-to-be. For some reason, we both thought seeing one another the morning I arrived would be a BRILLIANT idea.🤪
I don't sleep well on planes.. I was happy to form coherant sentences 😂
🌞 It was fabulous to have some 1x1 time with Rach and of course, greet Sekhmet.
After catching up on sleep, I met an old roommate for dinner and treated myself to Moulan Rouge.
I wasn't adjusting well to my place in Battersea. I have learned over the years, how valuable being vulnerable and asking for help can be. My friends Ashley and Kevin took me in immediately. Photo evidence of us at Hamilton. Can you tell I have a passion for musical theatre? 🎭
The Wedding of Mr and Mrs Plant
The weekend brought the reason I flew over to the UK in the first place
I met Rachel (and Ashley, and Albena and Kayla, and Emma, and Jim and Rob...) as a result of my Executive MBA Program, and immediately fell in love. I had a very abrupt return back to the US in 2020 (which you can read about here):
Fast forward to the present moment, and the stars aligned so I could attend the Plant wedding.🙏🙏🙏
I will forever be grateful I got to be there in person to see Rob and Rach officially say I do
And of course... We all are well aware of the fact that the gorgeous and lively bridge knows how to get down on the dance floor 🧜♀️
The evening ended with me... catching the bouquet... AND spraining my f'ing ankle trying to brag about it... on the dance floor. 🤦🏻♀️ Beyonce's if you like than you should have put a ring on it MAY or May not have been playing 🤣
London-Town Part Two
It's back to London after the wedding, to see two of my University Mentors for my Executive Board MBA program. It started with Michele Williamson visiting the Globe Theatre; a first for us both. We saw a Mid-Summer Nights Dream which I loved as I played the Abbess in Highschool
The next day was spent with the incredibly powerful, wonderful, wise, and kind Katalin Illes. I am so grateful our path crossed at a pivotal point in my own life. My only regret? Dr. Illes and I neglected to take any pictures 🙈
Adventures in Folkestone
The British sea-side called as I went to visit my friends Clem, her husband Jon and their gorgeous daughter Mabel. I like to call Folkestone, England's version of Dubai as there is SO MUCH development going on (much to the chagrin of local residents). It was amazing to get to the sea for a few days, and catch up with a family that means the world to me.
We visited Mabel's favorite store (the hot chocolate shop. She had insisted we go even before I arrived 🍫🤪🌈
Wandering down the waterfront, a carousel had magically arrived the very week before. Coincidence? I think not 🤣
Final Days visiting my Godmother and Surrogate Family
SPOLIER ALERT: To come in my next blog... this experience (focusing on previous moments of happiness) has helped me to have hope in our present moment. My intention is that this blog helps you to remember some moments of peace and calm admidst the chaos of your own life 🥰
Sending lots of love, Maria Vandenburg
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