the holidays are coming, the holidays are coming…
there are some absolute beauties – the natural history museum is stunning, and skating in the shadow of the tower of london is pretty remarkable. but my absolute all time favourite is undoubtedly somerset house. the beautiful courtyard is taken over by the rink, with twinkling lights overhead, dancing snowflakes projected onto the ice, and a majestic christmas tree watching over all the festivities.
and the best bit? tom’s skate lounge, the cosy winter bar where you can sip bubbles or mulled wine while taking in the action on the ice. it’s run by tom aiken, who is also behind the summer pop-up tom’s terrace in the warmer months.
we haven’t wasted any time getting into christmas this year, and were lacing up our skates on opening night last week. my girlfriend mary and i worked up some dutch courage before our session with some rink-side bubbles in the lounge while we waited for the boys.
they don’t allow proper cameras on the ice, so apologies for the picture quality in some shots.
now before you go thinking that my enthusiasm for winter activities means that i am graceful on ice, think again. i may love to ski and skate, but i am absolutely rubbish at it. i blame growing up in a hot climate. i can just about stay upright, but can’t seem to master acceleration – any forward movement really. so when left on my own, i inevitably end up doing a great bambi impression.
which means someone is usually tasked with dragging me along behind them. gliding along merrily while a boyfriend/friend/helpful passerby does all the hard work is seriously fun – i highly recommend it. it’s the way forward!
but i was ok!
mary and i escaped to the kiddies’ corner, where i made off with a penguin and even got some speed up… before getting yelled at by the safety marshall. apparently the penguins are just for children. pffft. ageism.
after our session on the ice was over there was time for a few more bubbles before making our way to soho for dinner. it was the first time we’d seen the carnaby street lights, which are always my favourite display. this year is dedicated to the rolling stones.
skate somerset house is so much fun, and will be running until january 6, so there is plenty of time to enjoy the ice. more details here. what are your favourite holiday activities?
(additional iphone photos by sean)