Sophie and her Senses go on Holiday

Hi friends! Have you had a good week? I hope so! My week has been SO wonderful, and very busy. Here’s what I did last week, as told by my five senses:


Day 1: CPH to LDN 

Touched: Textures in pieces of art (Duchamp, Rivera, Picasso, Dali; + tons of modern artists). You could see/feel the texture the artists were trying to create by manipulating paint, clay, wood, etc., but it was art in a museum, so we couldn’t actually touch it.

Saw: The tube. The escalators are incredibly long and steeply sloped, and it feels totally futuristic and tubular!

Heard: British English. So much more English than I’m used to!! (+ inadvertently eavesdropping).

Smelled: Combination of cultural cuisines. At Southbank Centre Market there were so many ethnic food smells (Indian, Ethiopian, Thai, German, coffee, Moroccan); everything smelled and looked so good!

Tasted: Nando’s. We made a pit stop for fries and the first ice cream I’ve had since the States! I thought Nando’s was a British chain because it’s a classic London place to go, but it’s actually originally from South Africa. (Should I have known that?)


Day 2: exploring London with Jobelle 

Touched: Lots of fabrics. We tried on so many clothes! We had lots of fun!

Saw: Westminster Abbey, the Tower of Big Ben.. We stumbled upon Buckingham palace and the changing of the guard, and then we were walking and spied a beautiful church (that happened to be Westminster Abbey!). How serendipitous!


Heard “Bong” Big Ben sounding one o’clock! And Westminster abbey too!

Smelled: horse poop, haha (:

Tasted: strawberries with fresh cream. Yumm-o!


Day 3: exploring London solo 

Touched: miles and miles of pavement and cobblestones — walked from Camden to Camden town through Marylebone to Hyde Park to Oxford Street; shopped through four levels of Topshop & etc., walked to Covent Garden until Elephant station and finally home on the tube

Saw: one of my housemates for next year! Her name is Anna and she’s nice and cool and I’m excited to live with her.

Heard: shrieking from a fight! A girl was yelling and going after this guy and bystanders and cops broke them up. I love how everyone went from standing still doing their own thing at the station to going to the curb (kerb) to watch the kerfuffle.

Smelled: Petrichor, kind of (minus the dry weather part)

“Petrichor is a pleasant smell that frequently accompanies the first rain after a long period of warm, dry weather.” -Google Search

Tasted: Fresh naan! From a clay oven in Camden market! With chicken tikka!


Day 4: LDN to Hexham

Touched: A soft double bed  was a great break from my twin bed and hostel beds. The Flavells made me feel right at home ❤

Saw: Family. It’s been such a long time (we thought maybe 2008?) since I’d seen Martha, David, Elinor, and Georgia!

HeardGuitar, violin, clarinet, piano, harp, voice. After a delicious home cooked traditional British meal, the girls put on a concert for me! They played selections from their Ceilidh band, pieces for their juries, and David made up a song on the guitar for me!

Smelled: Leeks and cabbage in butter. It was so nice to be part of a bustling kitchen again. I’ve really missed sitting around the kitchen table cooking and talking and eating! Martha made sure I had lots of veggies to ward off the scurvy I was likely cultivating (? getting? in the process of accumulating?) 🙂

TastedA delicious birthday cake to celebrate my and Martha’s birthday (we’re both on March 15!) Martha constructed a perfectly moist, chocolate layer cake, which Elinor topped with a delicate, homemade marshmallow frosting, chocolate dots, more marshmallows, and topped with a chocolate egg! Scrumptious!


Day 5: exploring Hexham with the Flavells 

Touched: A jersey cow at a local dairy farm! I patted its lil’ head and it licked my hand ❤  I miss cuddling with animals! I miss my dog!


SawThe British countryside! Martha gave me a morning walking tour around Frankham Cottage and the beautiful hills around it.

Heard: Lots of music recently. Since I’ve been in airports and bus stations, I’ve been listening to lots of music. It’s interesting that many public places usually play American top hits! Spotify is more interesting, I think. I like listening to each country’s top charts. It’s cool that the advertisements are in different languages each time too!

SmelledClean air–free from cigarette smoke (extra bad in London, I thought)

TastedFresh ice cream! (panna cotta and fudge flavor. Delish!)


Day 6: walking all around Barcelona with Lydia

Touched: FINALLY warm sun!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! And the sand and the ocean 🙂

SawSagrada Familia, Las Ramblas market, the ocean

At the market:

HeardChatting with Lydia’s friends. We met Lydia’s friend from school (Zoe is studying abroad in Barcelona), and we ate paella with some of her friends. It was so fun to meet a bunch of new girls! We had a really good time.

SmelledFreshly mowed grass. The smell of fresh grass reminded me of summer; I can’t wait! I’m so excited for Copenhagen to start warming up! I love the cafe culture in Europe ❤

Tasted: ALL the foods (coffee and croissant; long pastry dough with superfine sugar; mango; strawberry kiwi smoothie; calamari; pork dumpling; cha shao bao; strawberries; Spanish macarons; truffles; salami; palmier; sangria; paella; strawberries again; Milka chocolate bar; popcorn

Day 7: SO MUCH WALKING around Barcelona with Lydia

TouchedNo feeling in our feet? 39,397 steps (16.23 miles) in 14 hours, walking ALL over the city. We started at Sagrada Familia, walked up to Park Güell, took the metro to Las Ramblas, walked up to the castle Montjuïc, walked down the hill, walked to the metro back to the market, walked to the ocean, walked to churros in the Gothic quarter!


Heard: Acoustic guitar, steel guitar, steel drums, violin at Park Güell 

SmelledFire! We saw a huge plume of smoke and wondered why no firemen were around–did they know about the fire? Were we the first witnesses? We didn’t have data or cell plans, so how could we tell people about the fire? Was it a controlled fire? It turned out that it was a gigantic cookout at the fire station! How neat!

TastedGelato, churros, and flan. What a delicious way to end the trip!


I’m back in Copenhagen now, and man is it hard to get back to school work!

But I must.

I hope you’re all having a wonderful warm start to Spring! It looked like the caucus day was quite lovely in Lawrence.





One Comment Add yours

  1. Susan Tate says:

    Another amazing post by Sophie! Love the food pictures especially in Barcelona but most especially of your time in Hexham . What a gorgeous birthday cake. XO

    Liked by 1 person

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