Adulthood Non-fiction Observations Recommendations

Podcasts picked from a podcast

2021, a third national lockdown and barely an end in sight means we’re all searching for things to do. Many are furloughed still and have plenty of time on their hands, others are working and need an escape but whatever your personal situation, I have an idea for you!

I’m a sucker for Podcasts. Sometimes even I prefer them to music. I love music, but sometimes I want to learn things, to engulf myself in other people’s conversations and to hear about things to which I relate.

I’ve started using an exercise bike because going to work in the dark and arriving home in the dark leaves no time for running. At least, that’s what I love to tell myself. I hate running. For January, at least, and hopefully beyond, I have vowed to cycle for ten minutes on the bike before I do anything else each day. It is January 8th and so far I have stuck to it.

Mostly, I’ve done this to music. Occasionally, I have done it in silence. Yesterday I did it listening to Laura Whitmore’s Castaway Podcast. The Podcast about Podcasts.

So far I have only listened to one episode with the lovely Giovanna Fletcher as a guest and I have already gained so much from it.

Obviously, the first podcast recommendation is going to be this one. Castaway by Laura Whitmore.

My to-listen-to list already has on it:

  • David Tennant Does A Podcast With… (I’ve heard he has fabulous guests and fabulous conversations) Since writing this post I have listened to James Corden and begun Catherine Tate – both brilliant so far.
  • Giovanna Fletcher – Happy Mum Happy Baby (An honest discussion about motherhood)
  • Sh**ged, Married, Annoyed – Chris and Rosie Ramsay
  • Ctrl Alt Delete – Emma Gannon

If you’re thinking of ways to usefully while away hours of yet another lockdown then, you’re welcome 🙂

All blog posts can be found at and to read my published work visit my portfolio. My debut novel, Dear Brannagh, is out now.

Adulthood fiction Recommendations Review Stories Writing

Lucinda Riley: a recommendation

During lock down my friend gave me a book by Lucinda Riley. The book is set in Southwold, Suffolk which a place we visit fairly often and a place we love. It is also a place we have been denied of recently due to everything going on. We’ve been denied of going anywhere!

I started reading The Butterfly Room during the stricter lock down. When STAY HOME was the clear message from the government. The lines weren’t blurred. We knew who we could and couldn’t see, where we could and couldn’t go.

The novel brought me so much pleasure in reading about a place I know well. It supplied comfort in memories of good times and also the reality in that nothing is perfect. The book even gave me ideas for a lock down novel (w a t c h t h i s s p a c e).

I then found a second book by Riley in the local phone box come book exchange. This one was set in Greece. The Olive Tree brought me the same warmth in remembering freedom. It made me feel as though I too was holidaying in Greece while reading it on my sun lounger on hotter days.

Riley’s recurring theme in both novels is houses. Old, grand, full of secrets and mystery. One thing that I particularly love is the authenticity of the stories and how she effectively depicts fragility and imperfection in all human lives.

If you want escapism in difficult times, look no further.

Two books in and I highly recommend Lucinda Riley as a must-read author. Especially now.

All of my blog posts can be found at and to read my published work visit my portfolio.

Recommendations Review

A place to visit: Darcie & May Green, London

Picture this: it’s a Sunday, it’s raining, you’re severely hungover and you’re in London with some good friends. What else is there to do other than drink yourselves silly somewhere and eat lots too? Well, Darcie & May is certainly a fantastic place to begin or stay, whatever you feel like.

This is exactly what myself and a few friends did over the weekend and I’m still smiling about it as well as wincing at the cut on my knee – a result of a drunken fall in the middle of a station platform.

After waking up more hungover than expected having consumed far too much and mixed all sorts of alcoholic beverages the afternoon into the night before, my friend and I felt a McDonald’s was the only way forward. As fat as we knew this sounded seeing as we had a brunch to attend at Darcie & May Green later that morning, we ventured out in the rain to the closest McDonald’s we could find.

On arrival, we almost cried. All we could see were boards and no sign of life until we moved around the corner to see that the counters were running and people in similar situations as our own were queuing up to get their very own Sausage and Egg Mcmuffin. Relieved didn’t cover it.

Onwards and upwards and feeling slightly better in ouselves, we went back out in the rainy Sunday London morning and headed to the canal in search of our brunch venue. After a risky ride on the tube where all (four now) of us were trying desperately hard not to vomit by staring at the tube map which was the only thing that remained still, we arrived at the colourful boat on the canal (pictured above).

As we weren’t able to book between 12-3 we headed inside to discover that the situation was as we’d expected with it being such a miserable day and had to wait an hour until we could get a table for the six (now) of us. This didn’t matter though, the other half of the boat was a bar – perfect!

Though it was a bit of a squish, we crammed into the small bar and sipped happily on cokes due to our still rather hungover states and inability to face alcohol just yet. It wasn’t long however until we were sat at our table in the restaurant side of the Darcie & May with The Bondi breakfast and an already empty bottle of Prosecco. Bottoms up, refill please!

Yes, for just £39.50 per person, we got a main dish, a sweet and an unlimited supply of Prosecco. What could possibly go wrong?

Being an Aussie themed restaurant, Darcie & May serves the best of the recent popular foods such as salmon and poached eggs on charcoal bread, avocado on toast and The Bondi which consisted of quality sausages and bacon, mushrooms, avocado, charcoal bread and a spiced tomato sauce which was delicious. The sweet we all opted for was banana bread, mascarpone and fruit and it too was incredible. Though there was a selection to choose from that would satisfy all taste buds.

Five hours later, six bottles of prosecco down and a little wobbly, I headed for the train. All going well (ish) – if you don’t count getting lost on route to the tube station, falling asleep on the man next to me and a phone battery of 1% – I was almost on home turf when I fell at the station platform. Not just a minor, subtle fall that I could shake off, no, a whopping great splat on the ground in front of many passers by and a huge bruised, swollen and cut knee. Oops.

At least I won’t forget about our great time on the Darcie & May any time soon.