A Star is Born

A Star is Born.

Well, that is a catchy blog post title if ever I saw one.

Actually the star to whom I refer was born 20 years ago, and has been shining ever since.

IMG_7252Georgia 1930s gal

This is my daughter, Georgia Belle, and I’m writing this post to alert the world (or anyone who might stumble upon my blog) that she is madly saving money for her lifetime adventure – to study acting in New York.

She auditioned for the prestigious Stella Adler Studio of Acting  and was accepted into the 2 year Conservatory Program.  Naturally this was thrilling news but now we just have to work out how to get her there and keep her there whilst she studies.

She will be living in New York on an Australian student visa and under this arrangement she is not permitted to work to earn a living for herself which is frustrating to say the least.

So she was prompted to set up a GO FUND ME page to help raise some much need funds, and here is the link to her page:

https://www.gofundme.com/georgiastellaadler

I am astounded by how many people request funding through various platforms, but I am also astounded by how many generous and kind benefactors there are in the world, who have the time, interest and money to donate to someone who is trying to achieve their goals and make their dreams come true.

I thought I would post this to help her along her way, and it is true that every dollar helps.

I thank you in advance and so does my gorgeous, young rising star.

Travel theme: Paths

This week’s travel theme  is paths and here is one past journey with some of the places and pleasures it lead to:

The pathway into London was awash with light while the dark Thames snaked its way through the city.

Life in Camelot, Travel Theme: Paths

On the ground, the path alongside the Thames embankment brought some interesting and exotic surprises:

Life in Camelot, Travel Theme: Paths

Life in Camelot, Travel Theme: Paths

You never know who might find resting along the path;

Life in Camelot, Travel Theme: Paths

Or who has rested here previously.

Life in Camelot, Travel Theme: Paths

The path to St Pauls provided options for hungry travellers.

Life in Camelot, Travel Theme: Paths

The path along Fulham Road has football fans galore (but not cold winter day).

Life in Camelot, Travel Theme: Paths

The path to poverty can be found through Christmas shopping in Oxford Street,

Life in Camelot, Travel Theme: Paths

and the path to ruin for many a poor mother can still be found in London’s high street stores.

Life in Camelot, Travel Theme: Paths, gin

Finally, the pathway to another portal,

Life in Camelot, Travel Theme: Paths

that lead to a path for a passage at sea,

Life in Camelot, Travel Theme: Paths

which ultimately lead to a pathway to paradise.

Life in Camelot, Travel theme: Paths

St Valentine’s Day

Ah, what is love?  Who can answer that question; most people have different definitions of what love means to them and I think that is how it should be.  But greeting cards have to be sold, flowers have to be harvested and chocolate has to be eaten so here is my post inspired by St Valentine’s Day.

Visiting Busan in South Korea last year (as a port stop on an epic 6 week cruise of Asia) I was delighted to see a wall of love locks and messages inspired by love.  The Parisians lost their love locks in 2015 when the council deemed their outpourings of love too weighty for some of the city’s most beautiful bridges; OK so it was actually the 45 tonnes of some million padlocks causing danger to the bridges rather than all those emotions.

But these locks and heart-shaped notes seem to be here to stay and add to the charm of walking to the top of Yongdusan Park, and taking in the panoramic views of the harbour below.

You can even sit down and admire the views, and the love.

Love seat, love locks, Life in Camelot, Korea - St Valentine's Day

A love seat amongst the love locks

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Thousands of heartfelt messages of love for everyone to read

Love locks at Busan Tower, Korea - Life in Camelot - St Valentine's Day

A wall dedicated to those dedicated to expressing their love.

Life in Camelot with love locks in Busan, Korea - St Valentine's Day

Just loving the love.

Happy Valentine’s Day to lovers in all the countries around this wonderful world and to my darling husband, who travels with me to all these countries, and wants to see as many of them as possible.

Walking

Here’s something I prepared earlier but wanted to refresh for joining in to Where’s My Backpack‘s weekly Travel challenge, which this week is Walking:

Life In Camelot

Walking These boots were made for walking…

Above all, do not lose your desire to walk:

every day I walk myself into a state of well-being and walk away from every illness; I have walked myself into my best thoughts, and I know of no thought so burdensome that one cannot walk away from it… but by sitting still, and the more one sits still, the closer one comes to feeling ill…

Thus if one just keeps walking, everything will be all right.

(Bruce Chatwin – Songlines)

The first Bruce Chatwin novel I read was Songlines.

I think it is time I read it again.

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Favourite Song Friday – Same Old Lang Syne

This is my final Favourite Song Friday (have a look at my others here) because it is the second last day of this year, and coincidentally my daughter’s 20th birthday, and I shall start another episodic topic next year (stay tuned for that – pun intended…)

Tomorrow is New Year’s Eve and people will be celebrating all over the world, in all different ways.  I believe the general consensus is that 2016 has been a pretty rotten year and I would concur, for global and personal reasons.  However, as a species I believe we are very good at accepting and adapting and that is what I intend to do in 2017.

Many people will sing in the new year in with the famous tune, Auld Lang Syne, which is about preserving old friendships and looking back over the events of the year.

Dan Fogelberg’s song, Same Old Lang Syne, evokes a beautiful sense of nostalgia about past loves, past lives and memories we hope to cherish forever.

I have celebrated New Year’s Eve in some wonderful places around the world, with huge crowds or with just family and friends.  These include:

sleeping in the rental car by the side of the road in Scotland;

standing in crushing crowds on Tower Bridge in London;

watching Sydney’s famous fireworks from Taronga Zoo;

freezing with the family on Navy Pier in Chicago;

visiting friends in Washington, D.C.;

Life in Camelot, NYE, Washington 2009

sailing around the Caribbean on board QM2;

Life in Camelot, New Year's Eve on Cunard's QM2 2014

or celebrating my dear friend’s birthday, who is none too pleased that her birthday falls on 31st December.

Life in Camelot, Favourite Song Friday, New Year's Eve, Birthday

So, dear readers, I wish you all a wonderful New Year and an exciting and rewarding 2017.

When you are singing Auld Lang Syne think of the memories you have made, old and new, and look forward to the future with friends, family and lots and lots of favourite songs.

 

 

Cruisey Christmas

Christmas day this year is very hot but still spent with family. Two years ago we were on board Queen Mary 2 for Christmas which was incredibly festive and a special way to spend a Christmas.

Here is my blog post from last Christmas as we cruised around the Caribbean from island to island in a different heat.

I took photos of the incredibly festive stateroom door decorations that other QM2 passengers went to the trouble of packing for Christmas:

Life In Camelot

Last year I spent a cruisey Christmas on board Cunard’s Queen Mary 2 – a rather splendid way of spending Christmas.

Obviously there were a couple of thousand of other travellers spending Christmas on board too and, in my journeys around the decks, I was simply amazed at the lengths some of these people went to in decorating their stateroom doors with festive displays.

Here are some wonderful examples of Christmas at sea:

I hope you all had a very merry Christmas in 2015 and cheers to the New Year – and let’s go cruising.

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Favourite Song Friday – The Snowman

It is Christmas time and whilst I have never been a lover of many of the traditions surrounding this feast that are associated with a cold climate, e.g. plum pudding, mince tarts, eggnog and hot roast dinners on a sweltering summer day (in Australia), there are some things I do love and one of them is this Friday’s favourite song:

Walking in the Air by Howard Blake

The Snowman, Life in Camelot, Favourite Song Friday

This song is featured in the short film called The Snowman, about a young boy who befriends the Snowman in his yard and together they share a wonderful Christmas adventure before the harsh reality of daylight sets in.  This song plays during their magical journey together.

This delightful and seasonal short film was based upon the children’s book by Raymond Briggs.  In the film the song was performed by a young English choirboy called Peter Auty [1] rather than the famous Welsh Chorister, Aled Jones, to whom it is generally accredited.

I discovered this short film and haunting theme song when I was experiencing my first white Christmas, complete with all those traditional trimmings, in 1986.  I went to stay with my former flatmate and her family in Hull, Yorkshire in England.  They welcomed me and my fiance with open arms, warm hearts and plenty of food.

Life in Camelot with fiance and friend at Christmas in Hull - Favourite Song Friday

Life in Camelot with fiance (and female guest) in Hull on Christmas Day

Christmas in Hull, Life in Camelot 1986

Christmas tree in Hull, Yorkshire

Christmas in Hull with a welcoming family, Life in Camelot, Favourite Song Friday

Opening gifts on Christmas day with the Harrisons in Hull

I bought the DVD of the movie when my daughter was young and we play it every Christmas eve – it is probably the only Christmas tradition I have imposed upon her.

Two years ago we were in London just before Christmas time and we were delighted to find there was a musical production of The Snowman; so of course we went along to see it (and I took some sneaky photos).

So I will be watching the film tomorrow evening, hopefully sipping on something a little festive and wishing all my readers, and friends and families, a very Merry Christmas whether you be in a cold climate or a stinking hot one like mine will be this year.

There will be one more Favourite Song Friday for this year (stay tuned next week) and then I shall start something new next year.

Merry Christmas from Life in Camelot.

Favourite Song Friday – Cohn

The year is rapidly coming to a close and during this countdown to Christmas everyone seems to be rushing around, driving badly, jumping queues and generally raising my anxiety levels.

So this Friday’s Favourite Song is one of my calming tunes and hopefully it will lower your blood pressure too.

Walking in Memphis by Marc Cohn

Life in Camelot, Favourite Song Friday - Marc Cohn

This song came from his debut, self-titled album in 1991 and there isn’t a single track on it I don’t like.

I had been living in New Zealand in 1991 and returned to Australia in early 1992, after just over a year away.  Marc Cohn’s lyrics refer to boarding a plane, ghosts of the past and the ability to live in the moment and I shared these emotions as I ‘boarded the plane’ home to Sydney.

I bought myself a copy of the CD early on after hearing this song played constantly on the radio and if it had been an LP rather than a CD, I would have worn out the grooves and many a needle by now (but the young readers may not have a clue what I’m referring to…)

So please enjoy this favourite song on this frenzied Friday, a fortnight before Christmas.

And don’t forget to let me know about the songs you listen to again, and again and again.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Next week I thought I should post a Christmas song and the following, and final week, I will have a song appropriate to New Year’s Eve.

Favourite Song Friday – Cross

Today’s Favourite Song is another oldie and a song I have shared with one dear friend for many decades – it makes me laugh and also makes me want to drive very quickly with the wind blowing through my hair.

(click on the link below to hear the song)

Ride Like the Wind – Christopher Cross (back up vocals by Michael McDonald)

Life in Camelot, Favourite Song Friday - Christopher Cross, Ride Like the Wind

Today this song is in honour of legendary space pioneer, John Glenn, who passed away yesterday at the age of 95. This WWII pilot, astronaut and Senator was the first American to orbit earth and was one of the 7 men involved in Project Mercury, chronicled in the book “The Right Stuff”, followed by a film of the same name.

Like all astronauts he, no doubt, experienced the sensation of riding like the wind – actually much faster than the wind – so I thought this was an apt song for this Friday.

As usual, have a listen and enjoy a quick trip down memory lane.

Don’t forget to tell me about your Favourite Songs this Friday, or any day of the week.

Postscript:  Oddly, I have just discovered (thanks to the internet) that Christopher Cross and Alan Parsons teamed up on a song called So Far Away, about NASA and space travel – spooky.

Favourite Song Friday – Ronstadt

Yesterday I learnt of the deaths of two people – both were elderly gentlemen so had lived long and fairly full lives but both had been a part of my life; one was a wonderful neighbour on the street where I grew up and the other was my first neighbour in Melbourne when I moved here.

This week’s Favourite Song Friday is in honour of them:

Somewhere Out There by James Horner and

performed by Linda Ronstadt and James Ingram.

 

 

This song is special to me – I taught it to my daughter when she was tiny and we have sung it together ever since (usually in the car).

We have also watched An American Tail, (an animated movie in which this song features), many times and I can recommend that for a bit of fun too.

This song incorporates a love theme and a slightly terrestial theme – it may be a bit spooky but I have requested that my daughter have it played at my funeral – one day.  I am not religious but I would (selfishly) hope that the memory of me lives on, just a little, with my friends and loved ones after I am gone,

so that:

Somewhere out there beneath the pale moonlight
Someone’s thinking of me and loving me tonight
Somewhere out there someone’s saying a prayer
That we’ll find one another in that dream somewhere out there

I welcome your thoughts and songs that give you pause for thought, or just make you feel good and please share your Favourite Song this Friday (or any day).