Celebrating 100 years of Roald Dahl on a Chilterns hike

From Roald Dahl to Mary Berry, leafy Buckinghamshire’s charms have attracted their share of celebrities. And with historic churches, idyllic villages and acres of stunning countryside, what’s not to love? In a bid to blow away the corporate cobwebs, I set off early on Saturday to embark on my celebrity inspired hike from Great Missenden to Amersham.

Roald Dahl's gravestone in Buckinghamshire

Roald Dahl’s grave

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In search of the perfect office brew at Piacha Tea Bar

Consuming 30,000 cups at our desks every year, tea is the essential elixir that gets us through the working day. Its restorative properties help spark ideas, relieve stress and provide a soothing moment of calm. But with sales of alternative tea soaring, has the traditional office brew had its day? I headed to tea bar and shop, Piacha, to get the lowdown on the new tea trends that could soon be sweeping through your office.

Piacha tea bar - discovering the perfect office tea at Piacha

Piacha tea bar

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Cracking claws after work at the Big Easy Lobster fest

As the cold and rain continue to batter our misery-laden, grey old island, my thoughts turned wistfully to freshly plucked, glistening seafood savoured on endless blue-sky summer days. And where better to seek wish fulfilment than at Covent Garden’s Big
Easy Bar. B.Q. and Lobstershack. Specialising in all American tucker from ribs and hogs to steak and seafood, the Big Easy Lobster fest grabbed my eye.  But was it really worth shelling out my salary for?   Claws at the ready, I set off to find out.

dressed to dine, crackling claws after work at the Big Easy Lobster fest

Office Breaks The Big Easy, Covent Garden

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Exploring Tibet’s Secret Temple after work

Offering towering mountains, coursing rivers and shimmering plains, Tibet sparks the imagination like nowhere else.  A mecca for mysticism, its magnificent monasteries, fluttering prayer flags and chanting monks are as compelling as its dramatic scenery. Intrigued by this mysterious land, I slipped out after work on Thursday to explore Tibet’s Secret Temple at the Wellcome Collection.

prayer flags on Yarlung Zangbo River, Tibet Exploring Tibet's Secret Temple after work

David Bickerstaff 2015 Yarlung Zangbo River, Tibet.

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Shaking up Saturday mornings at parkrun

Rising at 7.00 to run round a muddy field on a Saturday morning has as much appeal as sticking pins in my eyes. But shamed by my expanding midriff and spurred on by my alternative New Year’s resolutions, parkrun was calling.  Enticed by the tidal wave of rave reviews, I dragged myself kicking and screaming out of bed to find out what all the fuss was about.

close up of parkrun runners, shaking up Saturday mornings at parkrun

Office Breaks Shaking up Saturday mornings at parkrun

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Lighting the way after work at Lumiere London

Returning back to work in darkness, light relief arrived this week in the
form of Lumiere London – the capital’s first free light festival spanning 30 locations. Juggling terriers, shimmering dresses and neon birdcages were just a
few of the magical sites emblazoned across the city. Intrigued, I nipped out on
Friday night to find out what King’s Cross had on offer.

Close up of the Circus of Light after work at Lumiere London

Office Breaks Lumiere London

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Break out the gym: 5 alternative ways to exercise after work

Packing your gym bag with a feeling of dread?  The familiar pilgrimage from desk to treadmill marks the start of another year packed with good intentions.  But by the end of January, over one third of us will have packed in our post-work gym visits altogether.  If you’re looking to make a change this year, read our top five alternative ways to exercise and discover a whole new world of adventure.

girl hula hooping Bin the gym: 5 alternative ways to exercise after work

Niko Si Hooping

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Kaffee und kuchen after work at the German Gym

With a startling array of uber-trendy eateries springing up daily in King’s Cross, eating out  at work has never been so tempting.  The latest wunderkind on the block is the German Gymnasium. Amidst the sauerkraut and schnitzel, an enticing kaffee and kuchen menu caught my eye.   Served up during peak office sugar craving hours, I slipped away from my desk to savour some afternoon strudel.

close up off coffee pot - kaffee und kuchen at the German Gymnasium

Office Breaks kaffee und kuchen at the German Gymnasium

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Timetravelling after work to Christmas Past

With baubles, fir trees and tinstle popping up in offices across the capital, the festive frolics have arrived. But if you’ve ever wondered about the origins of Christmas trees, puddings and stockings, all is revealed at the Geffrye Museum’s fascinating Christmas Past exhibition.  From 17th century parlours to cutting-edge warehouse conversions, Christmas Past traces the homes, decor, food and rituals that have shaped Christmas over the last four hundred years.

Victorian farmyard toys at the Christmas Past exhibition at the Geffyre Museum

Office Breaks Christmas Past at the Geffrye Museum

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Exploring alternative states of mind after work

“Do not enter if you feel unwell.” “Search for the walls when you want to get out.” screamed the warnings plastered outside the Wellcome Trust’s latest exhibition States of Mind by Ann Veronica Janssens.  A post-work tipple to calm the nerves appeared to be out of the question too.  Joining the long queue snaking round the mysterious pink-shrouded room, I braced myself for a disorientating state of altered consciousness on an otherwise mundane Thursday after work.

Figures at States of Mind - a brand new exhibition at the Wellcome Trust by Ann Veronica Janssens

Office Breaks States of Mind, Ann Veronica Janssens

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