I took six months worth of desktop publishing courses while living in Ireland during the nineties and have been designing my website since 2001 so was thrilled to have the chance to design the cover for Come See About Me as well as all the material for the paperback. This book is set mostly in the town where I live—the soft place Leah falls after the devastating death of her boyfriend—and it was fantastic to be able to delve into some of its many charms.
A Come See About Me giveaway is to come (more details on that later). In the meantime I'm going to splash a bunch of my holiday photos here. I've taken so many snaps of Dublin during the past few years that this time around the only locations I captured were the Botanic Gardens in Glasnevin (they do lovely meals in their cafe so if you're ever visiting be sure to stop in there for a bite) and posters about the Irish European Fiscal Compact referendum hanging around town. Unfortunately the vote didn't go the way I wanted; what growth can ever come from austerity? Just look how austerity measures in England have pulled them back into recession...but that's a blog entry onto itself!
Anyway, most of my photographs are from our jam-packed four day jaunt to London (and a day trip to Windsor Castle, Stonehenge and Oxford), all dressed up for the Jubilee celebrations which at that point were only a week away. We were incredibly lucky to get tickets to see Misterman at the National Theatre, a one man show starring Cillian Murphy who was utterly mesmirizing as a man out of step with the world around him. Other than that one of the high points of the trip was visiting the Portobello Market in Notting Hill on a busy, sunny Saturday (they've got everything there and I scored a yummy pizza lunch for 90 pence at one of the stalls). In fact we were extremely fortunate to have gorgeous weather the entire four days and got a bit of a burn wandering around the city without sunscreen in late twenties temperatures (lesson: never skip the suncreen!). Another highlight occured just as we were leaving town, at the Heathrow Airport security scanner. My husband was setting the thing beeping and while he was more thoroughly scanned, who should be getting similar treatment next to him but our favourite Spook Tom Quinn (British actor Matthew Macfadyen) aka 2005's Mr. Darcy.
My other cool sighting while away was two seals off the coast of Shankill beach while out walking with my friend and her dog. The seals were so close to shore that we could've swum out to meet them. In fact, another couple were out there with their Labrador retriever playing fetch in the water. The lab kept spotting the nearest seal and trying to swim out to it only for the seal to duck underwater again and leave the dog paddling in circles. My friend and I stood there quite awhile watching the scene.
What else? I've been meaning to go on the Blitz - London at War walk for twenty-two years and finally managed to do it. Each of the London Walks I've been on over the years have been amazing and I can't recommend them highly enough. We got some cool (and cheap) antique prints from favourite childhood—books Babar, Tintin and Winnie the Pooh—at a stall in Portobello Market. I'll try to post a photo of them once I have them framed and hung on my wall. And we went to see Prometheus last Friday at the biggest theatre in Dublin's Savoy (I would see every movie in the Savoy one if I could!) and loved it just as much as Roger Ebert did. I remember the days when movie releases were months behind across the pond and now it seems that sometimes they're getting them first.
Now on to the photos:
London all dolled up, ready to celebrate.
By the Thames: double-decker buses on the Waterloo Bridge.
Selfridges, Oxford Street
On the South Bank, London Eye, Big Ben and Parliament in the background.
Portobello Market snacks.
Selfridges, Oxford Street
Their YA section.
Dublin's Botanic Garden photos to follow over the weekend!