We arrived in York late in the day with the sun having set a few hours before. The streets were dark and we could only catch a glimpse of the fortified walls and gates that surrounded the old town.
Micklegate Bar in the evening
Bell tower at night
The next morning we were up early and we bought our first Costa Coffee. Costa is a brand that has appeared across the UK since I left. Despite many return visits, York was the first place I have tried their coffee. I am not a coffee expert but the drink was fine; more enjoyable was the little gingerbread biscuit balanced on top of Megan’s whipped cream covered treat.
Gingerbread man from Costa Coffee
York is a walled city and the walls are open to the public. The views across and into the city are impressive. The minster stands out and, in the right light, is stunning.
Lamp post on bridge in York
Defensive tower along York’s fortified walls
Clifford’s Tower, the keep of York Castle
York Minster and city walls
Blue sky, sunshine, and flowering daffodils. A perfect weekend for walks in the park.
Daffodils in the sun
Hello Internet is a fantastic new podcast from CGP Grey and Brady Haran.
Hello Internet logo
Megan and I have listened to the first three and they are enlightening, entertaining, and from the heart. Highly recommended.
The cupcake infatuation was in full swing during our time in Melbourne. We saw small shops spring up across the city dedicated to the baking and selling of cupcakes – small sponges covered with icing. Many cupcakes were extravagantly decorated to resemble anything but a sugary treat.
Cupcakes tick many of the boxes required to be the basis of a new craze. They are cheap to make, consistent, familiar, and infinitely differentiable through size and decoration. They can also attract the sizeable mark-up needed to maintain a business. A cupcake and coffee is often presented as an affordable luxury.
Melbourne: Boxes of mini cupcakes
Melbourne: A multi-tiered stand of cupcakes
We saw this cottage industry appear in Melbourne and wondered if it would last. Other fads had come and gone. We moved shortly afterwards and I have thought little of cupcakes since.
So I was surprised to see a new cupcake store has opened in Lyon, France. When we passed the store it was attracting attention from others on the street. Passers-by commented and pointed out the business to their friends.
Lyon: My Cupcake
The cupcake store is clearly still a novelty in this city, Lyon. A food lover’s city in a country with pastries and delicious treats available on almost every street.
I wonder how the My Cupcake will fare against the established bakeries. It is unlikely to be the first cupcake store in Lyon but its existence suggests a growing market for treats from other cultures.
We often find ourselves in art galleries and museums during our travels. They offer us refuge, calm, and an enjoyable way to spend a few hours. The Scottish National Gallery in Edinburgh was no exception.
The Scottish National Gallery is centrally located and is home to a fantastic collection of art both painted and sculpted.
Banners outside the Scottish National Gallery
Rodin’s The Kiss taking centre stage
Rodin’s The Kiss
An unflinching weathered face
Beautiful life sized sculpture
Crimson adorns the walls of the lower gallery
A collection of busts fills a stairwell
Vivid blue offsets the bright impressionist paintings
The impressions mean more now having seen the landscape
Reverend Robert Walker Skating on Duddingston Loch