On New Year’s Day

… I’ll be with you again.

Well, we survived the holidays: Christmas in Arizona with Chad’s family, and New Years in London with la mia famiglia.

Why London you ask?

Short story: my sister’s two eldest boys’ marching band was invited to perform in the New Year’s Day Parade in London. So my sister Josephine, her husband Joe, our mother, my other sister Maria, and her husband, Marc, and their four children along with Chad and myself headed across the pond to Merry ol’ England.

Some highlights and tips:

1. Fly Virgin Atlantic. It’s the best hands down. They known hospitality. The flight attendants are lovely, courteous, and polite. Even in coach, each seat gets their own television with an unbelievable number of movies to watch. We flew in First Class on Continental to Arizona and since they removed their projection system and installed Direct TV, we had no entertainment on either flight because they couldn’t pick up the satellite feed. Horrible. Plus on Virgin you get plenty to eat and a free alcoholic beverage. So screw you, Continental.

2. Let Chad pick your hotel. He is a guru, a human divining rod for locating luxury accommodations in boutique hotels that don’t cost you a month’s salary. We stayed at the Andaz Hotel. I highly recommend it. Remember the exchange rate in London is 1 pound = 1.6 dollars.

3. Be prepared to eat at McDonald’s. Now don’t get on me. I know I preach about nutrition, but if you haven’t eaten British food, then you don’t know what I’m talking about. There’s just so much fish and chips you can ingest. Besides our big night out on New Year’s Eve cost a small fortunate and all we had to choose from was pheasant, venison and squab. After dinner Chad and I went across the street and ate two cheese burgers with fries. Delish.

Josephine and Joe

Madeline and Mitchell

Marc and Maria

4. When in doubt, offer your family member a drink. Yes, it’s true. Family is more fun on alcohol. Even my mom was tolerable after a glass of champagne. My sister, Josephine and her husband were a hoot. She was wearing sequined slacks on New Year’s Eve and posed for the camera like she was on America’s Next Top Model.

Mom's glasses are from the Sophia Loren Collection

Mom's glasses are from the Sophia Loren Collection

5. See the sights. My brother-in-law, Marc, arranged a great tour of London. Don’t miss the view from the Eye and check out Windsor Castle (I didn’t. Josephine, Joe, Chad and I hung out in the lounge at the Mayfair Hotel and had drinks instead), but mom and the kids said it was grand. Skip the boat ride up the Thames. Remember it’s freezing in London this time of year.

6. Go to the theatre. We saw War Horse, a play in which actors work with life-size puppets. Josephine, Joe and mom took in Billy Elliot but got screwed in their seat selections. Note the English don’t use orchestra or mezzanine. They say, stalls (our orchestra) or… well don’t worry about it. Anything but the stalls probably sucks.

And do not take your mom to the Pop Art exhibition at the Tate Modern. Unless you have that kind of relationship with your mother where you enjoying looking at enormous photographs depicting penetration. It was too risqué for me mum.


One Comment

  1. Danh
    Posted January 22, 2010 at 10:24 pm | Permalink

    You and Chad are so cute together!

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