Monday, 2 February 2015

Jumping Out Of Planes

If you had told me this time two and a half months ago that I wouldn't have believed you, but here I am, writing a blog post to tell you that I have:


I was joined in Wiltshire at GoSkydive by my mother, my amazing honorary godmother Jill and my three tall and slightly podgy looking (all due to jackets under the T-shirts, I assure you) cheerleaders.


I had the whole shebang videoed on a GoPro, a camera that I had heard a lot of hype about, but had never personally used. I'm so glad I did because it now feels like a dream.


We flipped frontwards out of the plane (I'm not too sure why I used "we" because I certainly didn't have much say in the matter, so I screamed.
I have poor volume control as it is, but the girls on the ground said that they could hear me screaming even though I was so high, which I sort of see as an accomplishment!



We fell for about two miles in -20 degrees Celsius. You know when you're skiing and you're going so fast that it hurts your face and your lips because it's so cold?
It was a little like that, but at 120 MPH.


It was an incredible experience being so high up, on a clear day apparently you can even see the Gherkin in London!


After the parachute went we went through a cloud, but after about 20 seconds, you could see houses and field boundaries beginning to emerge.
This is when the man I was strapped to asked me if I wanted to steer.
Did I want to steer?!
Had this man lost his mind?
Apparently not, because I'm still here and it was so cool, although my mum said from the ground I looked like I was spinning in circles.



I just wanted to thank everyone for such generous donations, I couldn't have dreamed of the Just Giving page reaching over £4500, I am so grateful. Every single penny donated goes straight to the EAAA.


GoSkydive offer the highest commercial skydive in the UK, based in Wiltshire. They, reassuringly, replace all of their kit every two years to ensure that they have the highest standard of equipment.
Their website is here!

Thank you all so much for your support, it was an incredible way to honour what would have been my sister's 18th birthday.

Happy birthday Luce xxx

Classic Woolley photo face?

Tuesday, 9 December 2014

Skyfall

On the 11th August 2013, I posted a blog post that I never in a million years thought I would have to write.


The majority of people at university don't know that my sister had a fatal horse riding accident a month before I started at university, it was blasted all over the news and on the Daily Mail site, great, just what we needed.
However, what they might know, is that I am completely petrified of heights, after I cried on Rush and fell over after the Saw ride on a Canterbury Christ Church University Snowsports trip to Thorpe Park.

So, obviously, the most logical thing to do raise money for the East Anglian Air Ambulance, would be to jump out of a plane at 15 000 ft, the highest sky dive in the UK.


The best bit about a 15,000 ft jump out of a plane?
You spend twice as long falling through the air as a 10,000ft jump.

The EAAA do not receive any direct government funding and rely solely on charity donations to raise the needed £7.6 million every year, we owe them for the precious final hours we got to have with my little sister.



On the 30th January of this year, Lucy would be turning 18. To mark this, I will be jumping out of a plane, something that she would find hysterically funny, something that I also find hysterical but mainly out of terror.

Like the last post about my sister, I know that well over 77 000 people worldwide have read my blog and I knew that it would reach a broader audience.

You can donate HERE. I am extremely grateful for any donations, however big or small.

Thank you xx



Thursday, 30 October 2014

The Company Shed

All through my work placement I've had a hankering for seafood, I couldn't get it off my mind, all I could think of was the spaghetti vongole I had in Amsterdam, oysters, crab, pretty much any living thing in the sea, it was bad.

I heard about The Company Shed somewhere online and begged mum and my godmother Jill to come with me as a lunch before I went back to Canterbury for university.

The Company Shed really is a shed on the shore, filled with lino covered tables and chattering people all exclaiming at how fresh and delicious the food is, you bring your own bread and choice of beverage (we opted for rose), grab some plates, a roll of kitchen roll, a table and get stuck in.


We started by ordering copious amounts of oysters, Jill had never tried them but Mum and I love them, especially with Tabasco and lemon.


 "Oysters are only an aphrodisiac because if you can find a girl who'll eat a raw oyster, she'll do anything!"

What a line... Anyway..
We ordered the seafood platter, crab and claws- which you get to nibble and poke out all the meat from, prawns and the biggest, juiciest mussels I have ever seen!







We opted to try some of the hot dishes too, these garlic and parmesan crusted green lip mussels were to die for!
I loved them so much that I scooped out any remnants using my bread as a spoon.


Big, fat scallops, half the size of your fist, seared with thyme butter and bacon, served on a bed of salad and roasted tomatoes.





I thought it best to just let the pictures do the talking today, for what you're getting, it's such good value, I know we are definitely returning to this little gem and we recommend sharing all the dishes, don't be shellfish!

129 Coast Road,
West Mersea,
Colchester
C05 8PA

Thursday, 16 October 2014

Lunch in the Clouds

As I'm writing this, it seems like an entire lifetime ago that me and Millie, and our mothers flew up to the 40th floor of the Heron Tower in a Charlie and The Chocolate Factory-esque all glass lift, but our meal was just too good not to share.

Our mothers have been such close friends for years, Millie and I went to school together every day too, so it was only natural we would become great friends.
We went to London to see the wedding dress exhibit at the V&A where we chose our future dresses- look out Kate Moss, there are two copycats hot on your tail.


My only job was to find somewhere for lunch, I have a list as long as my arm of places I want to eat, how could I possibly choose?!
Earlier in the summer I went to the Taste Of London food festival, which I went to after speaking to head chef, Dan, due to our D&W reservation being cancelled.

Visiting Duck & Waffle was what we were going to do!


We stared at the menu hungrily, everything was just so enticing... hence the smorgasbord of dishes that are about to follow..

Fillet of beef carpaccio with truffles, foie gras and parmesan started us off, slivers of delicious beef hidden under salty parmesan snow.


Bacon wrapped dates, need I say more? These were one of my favourites.


Scallops from Dorset with elderflower, apple and caviar, light and refreshing after the dates.


Isn't Dan a genius?
Look at this, look at it.
This is the spicy ox cheek doughnut, rolled in paprika sugar..


.. Crammed full of tangy ox cheek and served with sweet apricot jam.


Tempura prawns perhaps? I can't find these on the menu, but these were a tad nondescript.


Millie's choice, smoked mozzarella, served with crunchy crystallised sage leaves and granola, so much more delicious than it sounds.


Foie gras creme brulee, served with lobster and brioche. What a creation!
This was lovely, but ever so rich! We shared between four and that was a struggle!



Then the showstopper, the main event, the big cheese, the restaurant's namesake. The duck and waffle.


Come on, beauty shot..

This is a dish put together by the Gods themselves, sweet and savoury all in one bite, amazing!


Whilst our mothers had coffee, we had pudding.
The waiter warned me against ordering it, but I was defiant, determined to prove him wrong by ordering the spiced tomato sorbet to accompany our shared coconut and raspberry sorbets, which thankfully he put in a separate bowl because it was certainly an acquired taste.







Just look at the views!




After some retail therapy, and some much needed exercise, we went to Madison for mojitos before sleepily getting the train home.



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