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aimeebynight

tales of travel, inspiration and adventure

A Lady Like THAT

It’s a balmy Wednesday evening here in Manchester and I’m heading to The Castle Hotel, an intimate live music venue hidden away on Oldham Street, to watch Ingrid Andress play.

The small back room is already filling up nicely with eager patrons, eerily lit by the hot blue lights coming from the stage where instruments await their players.

Suddenly there’s a rush of movement cutting through the chatter as a young woman weaves her way with purpose through the crowds to the front before hopping on the stage and grabbing a waiting guitar. Continue reading “A Lady Like THAT”

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The Lonely Islands

It’s our last day here in Venice and with most of the key attractions covered we decide to venture a little further afield and visit some of the lagoon’s other islands.

Murano and Burano are a must for any traveller with a keen eye for photography. Known respectively for glass blowing and lace making, both islands are also famous for their brightly coloured houses. Gracing the pages of Pinterest and Instagram alike, i’ve already seen hundreds of beautiful images of the homes on my computer screen but am keen to see them for real. Continue reading “The Lonely Islands”

The Great Crusade

Today is our first full day here in Venice and we wake to the sound of church bells mixed with the low rumble of boats passing beneath our window.

Breakfast and coffee consumed in the little pink and green panelled dining room worthy of a Wes Anderson film, we venture back to the Piazza San Marco to further investigate what Venice’s famous square has to offer.

We head straight to the Basilica Cattedrale Patriarcale di San Marco, originally build around 830 AD, and dedicated to Saint Mark the Evangelist after merchants stole what was thought to be his body from Alexandria and brought it back to Venice. The cathedral is the most famous of Venice’s churches and a stunning example of Byzantine architecture –  with an Italian twist. Continue reading “The Great Crusade”

Islands in the Stream

3am and its raining in Plymouth. The sort of relentless downpour that makes you think the gods have been angered, their fury cascading in bucketloads from the dark and brooding sky. We are soaked through by the time we arrive at the airport -bleary-eyes and overtired but excited to be jetting off to Venice this morning – Italy’s floating city.

A few short hours and we are descending over The Dolomites, their snow-dusted jagged tops casting great angular shadows into deep ravines and crevasses, playing tricks on my eyes. We touch down on time in Marco Polo Airport, where the local climate reveals winter sunshine and clear blue skies; it’s not necessarily warmer than home but thankfully a whole lot drier and brighter. We make our way down to Alilaguna – the public water transport service – heading for the orange line which will take us into central Venice. 

Continue reading “Islands in the Stream”

This must be the place.

When I woke up that Tuesday morning, it was, to all intents and purposes, an ordinary day. Except of course, It wasn’t. Continue reading “This must be the place.”

The Pursuit of happiness

A few weeks ago I dropped my oyster card onto the tube tracks. Berating myself for clumsiness, feelings of annoyance and upset creeping in, I actually contemplated climbing down to get it. I checked the time before the next train, and even ran through it step-by-step in my head: jumping down, grabbing the damn thing, and clambering back up before being hit. Continue reading “The Pursuit of happiness”

Last night a Reacher saved my life.

I love Jack Reacher. Fact. When the world is a sad, bad, scary place, I feel reassured just knowing that he can come along and kick some ass for me.

Solid, dependable, and analytical to a flaw; there’s still light at the end of the tunnel as long as Jack Reacher walks this earth. Jack Reacher might just be my spirit animal. His preference for solitude, uneasiness around staying in one place too long, and almost phobic response to commitment are things I completely identify with. It may not be everyone’s ideal, but to me, Jack Reacher’s alienation represents the ultimate freedom.  Continue reading “Last night a Reacher saved my life.”

Down and Out in Genoa

Today we bid farewell to Alba. As we rise, early doors and pack up the car, I am overcome with reluctance to leave our beautiful little piece of paradise here in Piedmont. But alas, we have places to go and things to do, and so we say our goodbyes, heading off to our intended destination, and the final stop on this Tour Italia, Genoa. Continue reading “Down and Out in Genoa”

Black Beauty

Today it’s time to head out to wine country. Luckily for us, Alba is not only home to amazing food, but also happens to be located in the Piedmont region, whose hilly area, the Langhe, is a major wine production province. Yesterday we dipped our toe in the water with Barolo, which left me slightly underwhelmed, and so I am pinning all of my hopes on today to be completely wowed by what Italy has to offer when it comes to wine. Continue reading “Black Beauty”

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