5 reasons to love being back at work in September

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Sipping ice-cold mojitos on a sun-lounger wearing little more than a slick of Ambre Solaire.  If this was how you spent the last two weeks of August, the return to work this September can be a cruel end to summer. But as you trudge back to your desk to resume old routines, the new season has a few hidden benefits tucked up its sleeve. If you’re facing the back to work blues, here’s a few crumbs of consolation to get you back into the swing of being back at work.

Red Russian vine by a doorway

Red autumn leaves

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Making oodles of noodles at Sozai Cooking School

“In Japan, only a lunatic would go to the bother of making noodles” declares our teacher as we pound flour and water.  Not being the world’s most patient cook, I wondered if I’d live to regret tonight. But having spent many a lunch break slurping the hearty fare in Kanada-Ya, I couldn’t turn down the opportunity to try out Sozai, the UK’s first Japanese Cooking School.  Raring for Ramen, I dashed over to Aldgate to uncover the culinary secrets of the Far East.

teachers preparing food at the Sozai cooking school

Ramen class, Sozai cooking school

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Weekend escape to Freiburg

Nestled between the Rhine and the Black Forest, Freiburg is officially Germany’s sunniest city. Offering cuckoo clocks, cobbled streets, roof top restaurants and pulsing techno bars, it’s a quirky blend of Hans Christian Anderson meets Kraftwerk.   Throw in some succulent, fresh Trout and Black Forest Gateau and it’s also a mecca for foodie indulgence.  Swapping my corporate suit for dashing dirndl, I set off in search of adventure.

The view from Freiburg Cathedral onto the main square

Views from Freiburg Cathedral

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Sizzling out of the office at London’s burning

With 2016 marking the 350th anniversary of the Great Fire of London, the City was ablaze this weekend in flickering light installations, scorching Catherine wheels and great balls of fire.  Created by Artichoke, the masterminds behind Lumiere London, the London’s burning commemorations sparked wonder across the capital.  As a City worker, I headed into the heat after work to experience my working environment in an entirely new light.

St Paul's Cathedral lit up with the Great Fire of London commemorations

Great Fire of London commemorations

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All aglow after work at the Colour Run

With Parkrun and Race for Life injecting fresh interest into the gruelling business of running, there’s never been a better time to pound the streets.  Already addicted to Parkrun’s Saturday morning community vibe, I had the urge to try something new.  Described as the happiest 5K on the planet, the Colour Run had me intrigued.  But was it all a cloud of colourful hot air? And more importantly, how would I get the colour out my hair for work the next day?

The Colour Run, Wembley Stadium

The Colour Run, Wembley Stadium

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7 simple steps to regain the holiday feeling at work

With our carefree holiday spirit left languishing by the sun loungers, we’re back to the harsh realities of work. Faced with the prospect of performance reviews and back-to-back deadlines, it’s all too easy to become mired in melancholy this autumn.  But what if you could regain the holiday feeling at work?  These seven uplifting steps won’t bring afternoon cocktails to your desk but will boost your spirits in the run up to your next travel adventure.

two sun loungers positioned at the end of a jetty

Kemal Kestelli Infinity pool

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Bank holiday escape to the Bohemian Paradise

With a name like Bohemian Paradise, this national park had a lot to live up to.  Promising mythical castles, towering trees and gargantuan sandstone pillars, it sounded just the kind of flamboyant weekend break I craved.  Casting off my work suit, I set off to follow in the footsteps of song writers and poets on a gloriously Bohemian Bank holiday get-away to  the Czech Republic.

close up of a house in the Czech Republic

The Bohemian Paradise, Czech Republic

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Dungeness: a day trip to the end of the world

A desert, post-apocalyptic housing and a nuclear power station: Dungeness is guaranteed to be one of the weirdest places you’ll ever encounter.  Described as “the end of the world” due to its remote location and barren stretch of coastline, it’s a mecca for nature lovers, photographers and Londoners seeking the ultimate “out there” holiday home location. After a week submerged under the shadow of sky scrapers, I boldly ventured where few bloggers have gone before.

ramshackle house in Dugeness

Ramshackle house in Dungeness

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A lunch break with a view at the Sky Garden

For a lunch break with a view, there are few venues that can top London’s Sky Garden. Offering sweeping panoramas across the great metropolis, the 155-metre bruiser offers a high-rise oasis of calm.  Raising you above the stress of office life, you can kick back, relax and gaze loftily at your fellow worker ants scurrying through the City streets.

The Sky Garden

The Sky Garden

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An afternoon of thrills and spills at London Nocturne

With bikes now constituting up to half of all road journeys on some central London routes, cycling is taking the capital by storm.  And with bike racks now as customary as breakout space, there’s never been a better time to get on your bike.  Keen to get a piece of the two-wheel action, I headed down to the City to catch a peek at  London Nocturne.

teams of cyclists on the first lap of London Nocturne

cyclists competing at London Nocturne

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Getting down and dirty after work at Stepney City Farm

Farming may seem a far cry from office life but with a growing number of city farms springing up, you can now swap the boardroom for the pig pen. With a never-ending cycle of feeding, grooming, exercising, cleaning and cuddling, volunteers from all walks of life are in high demand. Being a country girl at heart, I ditched the stilettos for wellies and got down and dirty with the pigs, goats, hens and rabbits at Stepney City Farm.

rounding up chickens at Stepney City Farm

Rounding up chickens at Stepney City Farm

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