segunda-feira, 28 de novembro de 2011

Mercado da epoca Vitoriana na Inglaterra...

Last weekend I had an amazing time visiting a Christmas market with a Victorian theme in Gloucestershire. It felt like I was inside one of the Charles Dickens’ books.

Have you ever heard of the Victorian times? That was basically the era when the Queen Victoria was on the throne in England from 1837 to 1901. In the beginning of that era, British people went through really hard times (mainly the very poor ones of course). Freezing temperatures, no electricity, no gas piped to heat the houses, poor kids had to work long hours almost like slaves, no hospitals and health treatment available like today. In other words, nothing like the Britain of nowadays.
Although it started as very difficult times, by the end of Queen Victoria’s era, England was the most powerful country in the world.

Did you know that Charles Darwin, Graham Bell and Charles Dickens were from the Victorian times?

If you have never seen one of Charles Dickens novels (some made to movies), I would strongly recommend. Try Oliver Twist, David Copperfield and Christmas Carol to name a few or come to England and experiment it like I did, walking along the market with a glass of mulled wine to keep the cold at bay while watching the contrast of modern and old times.

quinta-feira, 24 de novembro de 2011

Carpete no banheiro...

Would you find strange to have carpet in your bathroom instead of floor tiles? Well, in England and in many cold European countries this is quite common. This is my bathroom and as you can see I have carpet as well.
Why do we opt for that? Because it can be really cold to step out of the shower and have to walk on a freezing floor. Believe me, it gets really cold and carpets are used in most parts of the houses. We can keep it clean using special carpet cleaning products and vacuum cleaning often.
Do you find the idea strange and not very hygienic? Well, every time that a British person uses our toilets in Brazil and has to throw the dirty toilet paper inside the small bin beside the toilet bowl, they find that really weird and not very hygienic either. Here, the dirty papers are disposed inside the toilet bowl and flushed away straight after.
What is it like in your bathroom? Have you ever thought that could be different?
By the way, there are many modern bathrooms in England too, the bathtub exists in most houses and there is wallpaper in some. Below you can see the photos of my other bathrooms too.

PS. Uma leitora acabou de me mandar um email comentando que a traducao do Google estava horrorosa e que nada fazia sentido neste post se traduzido para o portugues. Que pena! Pra quem le em portugues, gente, o que eu tentei dizer eh que aqui na Inglaterra temos carpete no banheiro e na maior parte da casa, por que faz mto frio. A limpeza eh feita atraves de aspirador de po e produtos de limpeza. No Brasil jogamos o papel higienico no lixinho ao lado do vaso sanitario. Aqui o papel vai direto dentro do vaso. O lixeirinha fica soh para absorventes e outros produtos nao biodegradaveis. Para mtos brasileiros a ideia de carpete no banheiro parace pouco higienica e de dificil limpeza, mas posso garantir que nao eh. Do mesmo modo que para os britanicos utilizar nossos banheiros no Brasil e pensar que papel sujo na lixeira pode acumular por um dia todos (ou talvez ateh mais), eles veem isso como saneamento pobre ou mal feito. Vou tentar ter mais cuidado na hora da traducao. Desculpem e obrigada pelos emails.

quinta-feira, 10 de novembro de 2011

De volta e com sobremesas inglesas...

I’m back. YES! And my back is much better. Thanks to all my friends and readers who had thought about me and emailed me wishing me a good recovery. I’m back and I am here to stay.

It’s end of the year and full of excitement as Christmas time is approaching. I will keep you all updated about the decorations, shopping tips, recipes and so much more about what we are doing or planning to do during this beautiful season.

Yesterday morning I was having a coffee with my Belgian friend and we were talking about the cold weather. She then mentioned to me that she was planning to go to the supermarket to buy her food for the week and also to start to build her stock of food in the cupboards for the wintry days. If you live in the tropics it’s very difficult for you to picture that, but here, where temperatures will go below zero, it’s very wise to have some extra food inside your kitchen. She lives in a hilly area and if the snow is too heavy it makes it almost impossible to get the car and go to the supermarket some days. It’s also too cold and dangerous to walk when the ice starts to melt. I am not filling my cupboards with loads of food yet, or I will be too tempted to eat it all and my waistline might suffer even more. LOL!

Talking about waistline, the photo above shows some desserts (‘puddings’ as they are called here). Last Sunday we went to the pub for a chat and a glass of wine and we then decided to share a pudding board. Yes, share. I didn’t eat it all on my own, there were four of us. From left to right there is a piece of chocolate brownie with nuts, in the centre there is a slice of pistachio cheesecake and on the right a generous piece of stick toffee pudding (very British). All served with the options of choc mint ice-cream (little bowl on the right), double cream and hot custard (again very British to serve a type of hot cream with your desert).

Would you like to try that? Is it in your plans to visit England one day? I would love to hear that. If you have problems to leave a message below, please email me.

Bye for now and I’ll see you tomorrow with more about life here. This week I’ll show you in what sense our houses here are different from the Brazilian ones. Stay connected!

Sore back...

Hi there! I'm sorry I haven't updated the blog in the last few days. I have a terrible backache and I am trying to avoid using the computer as much as I can.

I hope to be back soon, meanwhile, I'll leave a link with you for the Chepstow Castle. Last Monday, my daughter visited this castle in Wales with her school friends and teacher . They are learning about medievel history.

sábado, 5 de novembro de 2011

Comida indiana...

Last night we went for an Indian meal. In England the Indian cuisine is one of the most appreciated by the British people, they love Indian curries and so do I. After British food, I would say that the Indian cuisine is the most sought after, with Chinese and other Asian foods following the list here. I guess in Brazil Italian dishes are the most popular after the Brazilian ones.

Anyway, as a starter we had the famous popadom (the light crispy cracker) served with mango chutney, sliced onions, very spicy veggies and a delicious sweetish yogurt and lemon sauce.

For the main course we shared my favourite chicken tikka masala, a mouth watering dish (a combination of coconut cream, almonds, yogurt and loads of aromatic spices). We also had a dish of creamy king prawns in a beautiful sauce (but I cannot remember the name) and chicken bhuna (a mild chicken curry, tha only arrived to the table after I took the photo, but then we were already engrossed eating). All served with a portion of chips, pilau rice and garlic nan bread. I savoured it all with a great red wine, in my humble opinion a fabulous combination. What did you have for dinner last night?

PS. I forgot something important. Today is  Guy Fawkes Day and Bonfire Night in England. I'm copying my post from last year about it. So, who hasn't had the chance to see it and understand what this celebrations mean, there it goes:

In 1605 many English people were not very happy with their King and his government, so a man named Guy Fawkes with some other friends decided to blow up the Houses of Parliament and consequently kill the King. The conspirators had 36 barrels of gunpowder ready to be used, but it seems that some of Fawkes' friends started to have second thoughts about it, and somebody wrote a  letter trying to inform the King about what was going to happen. The warning letter helped the king and they caught Guy Fawkes in time, with all the gunpowder in the cellar and tortured and executed him afterwards. In order to celebrate the King's safety, many bonfires were lit that  night, and since then English people have bonfires and fireworks every 5th of November.

Interesting, isn't it? Years ago Guy Fawkes was called a mercenary, nowadays he would be a terrorist, and although the date is very important it's not a public holiday in England, everybody works as normal, and in the evening they go to some schools, fields, pubs, wherever people are celebrating to watch the fireworks and the bonfire.  Does it remind you of Tiradentes Day in Brazil? Tee hee.

sexta-feira, 4 de novembro de 2011

Imagens do outono ingles...

Autumn pictures. Gorgeous time of the year!

Photos taken near my house. It's a beautiful part of the world.
What is it like where you are?