Monday, March 16, 2020

Social Distancing

Isn't it amazing how fast things change? At the beginning of this year, who would have thought that in a couple of months we were all going to be stuck home and avoiding in person contact? Now that all conferences, meetings and travel plans have been put on ice, schools and play dates are out, gyms, restaurants, bars and movie theaters closed, we are in the beginning of a time when we will really be tested for the resiliency of our spirit. So far social distancing has felt almost like a nice little break to the relentless stream of running around and activities. But I'm sure that it will get a lot harder when more time passes. Ask me how I feel in two weeks! For all the bad rap social media has been getting now is its time to redeem itself; thank goodness we have social media to keep us connected at least virtually. And maybe, when we emerge from this madness, we have learned something...the value of human in-person connection...the ability to survive without so much excess everything...that we can stop for a little while and life goes on...that we can control our thoughts and fears and make the best of any situation... My heart goes out to the nurses and the doctors in the forefront of this crisis. While we think we are inconvenienced by all this, it's nothing compared to what they are going through and sacrificing for the good of the society.

This past weekend, during our first social distancing days, the weather was thankfully gorgeous, so we got to enjoy the outdoors. 

The nature is full of beautiful signs of spring. 

And since we're stuck home, it's nice to have flowers home too. 

We can take the time to enjoy really nice breakfast (with homemade lox!). 

And come Monday, the home office is ready, Zoom has been downloaded and connectivity tested. 

Sunday, March 15, 2020

Last Day in London

My London trip picture diary concludes with these photos of our last full day in London, which also happened to be my middle daughter's 12th birthday. (Yay tweens!) The day started off with a most delicious birthday celebration brunch with views at Duck and Waffle, and where it was cool to witness the London weather patterns with a passing rain shower. The day continued with a visit to the Columbia Road Flower Market (if you're in London and need to buy flowers or plants, that is THE place to go), and finished off with a visit to pet my cousin's adorable cat and to see the Old Royal Naval College (a UNESCO World Heritage Site) in Greenwich.

I'm so happy we were able to visit London before the Coronavirus exploded. All our travel plans for the spring have been canceled, and we are not planning any new trips until the virus situation resolves, which may take months. 

Thursday, March 12, 2020

Wallace Collection / Tea at the Zetter Townhouse / Buckingham Palace

The picture diary of our London trip continues.

The Wallace Collection is a smaller museum, an amazing private collection that was given to the state in 1897. The highlight of the collection, and the reason we went, is the Fragonard painting the Swing, but there are countless of other amazing things in the museum. My kids enjoyed the armor section, and I loved all the pottery and the period rooms. 

A nice surprise was that I found smaller copies of the Marly Horse statues at the Wallace Collection. The originals are in the Louvre and we saw them last year in Paris. Beautiful copies of the statues were made for the Mackay Estate in Long Island in the 1800s, however the estate is long gone, and those impressive statues which were recently restored, are now at the Roslyn High School and at the Gerry Pond Park in Roslyn. 

Fragonard's Swing. My oldest daughter's favorite painting. This painting tells an interesting story

One of the things I really wanted to do in London was to enjoy an afternoon tea. Obviously there are tons of places to do this, but I wanted a place that had a traditional feeling and didn't cost a fortune. The Zetter Townhouse was written up in the February 2020 Vogue Magazine as one of the best places to have tea in London, and seemed to fit the bill. It was a lovely place and we had a nice indulgent experience. 

Tuesday, March 10, 2020

National Gallery / Royal Festival Hall / Oxford

Here's my London trip picture diary of our day at the National Gallery, London Philharmonics concert at the Royal Festival Hall and day trip to Oxford