Tuesday 5th July 2016

I am exhausted but happy! My last afternoon in Madrid yesterday with my amazing friends was brilliant fun but it was lovely to wake up (late – 10:30, oops) in my own bed listening to the birds cheeping. Then realisation dawned – it’s my 37th birthday. 


It’s a lovely bright day, about 15°C, so I am sitting outside on my balcony. I have opened some lovely cards (and a very cheeky one from my mate Ryan who I’m going horse racing with later this month). It was really nice that a couple of my old colleagues remembered me so have just emailed them, it is good to keep in touch. 

Pure vintage

I met Ryan at Collyer’s 6th form college so have known him nearly 21 years now, doesn’t time fly? He split up with his girlfriend a month ago so I have acquired her ticket for Glorious Goodwood Ladies’ Day (I am used to picking up last-minute invitations from Ryan, he never seems to want to settle with even the nicest of girls he meets). I would like to wear something new – or to be more precise something old, vintage in fact. People always say in magazines that they are “wearing vintage”, does that just mean they are wearing 1980s clothes they never threw away, or granny’s musty old skirt?! Anyway I will look for something special as Ryan always seems to make an effort when I see him, so my next fashionista job is to investigate how and where to buy unique vintage.

I am going to Mum and Dad’s this afternoon for a birthday meal so I think I will wear my new Zara jumpsuit as I bought it with my birthday money, Mum will love it. In the meantime, I am going to close my eyes, relax and daydream.


Wednesday 6th July 2016

I had a lovely time yesterday, we made fajitas, shared a nice bottle of wine and put the world to rights (if that is possible in these crazy times – Nigel Farage has resigned this week too, does nobody want to take responsibility for what has just happened in the big vote?) 

Oriental Mama

I explained to M&D that while the exchange rates are all over the place I will stay here in ‘Blighty’ for the moment and research vintage clothing, but I can’t succumb to exchange rate control for too long as I have an international calling to fulfil. 

Which led to a VERY exciting plan. We were talking about real silk and Thailand is one of the best producers. Dad doesn’t enjoy long flights but Mum seemed very keen to join me on this particular adventure. One thing led to another and it looks like we might be going on the Eastern & Oriental Express! What an experience that would be. Dad said he would treat her to this once-in-a-lifetime holiday for her 60th birthday next year, and I can afford it at the moment which is a position I might never be in again, so we were straight on the website and are considering dates in February or March next year. I did not see that one coming.


Friday 8th July 2016

No time wasted, the famous luxury train has been booked. We travel 11th March 2017 and stay at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel in Bangkok first. Dad managed to reserve us a Presidential Suite on the train and then we stay in Raffles, Singapore for a couple of nights. OMG!

It is a shame to note, however, that the pound to Thai Baht exchange rate has dropped 13.3% since EU Referendum voting day.

Travelex troubles

On the downside what a pain it has been trying to sort out my Travelex Supercard problem. My declined transactions were still showing on the app when I got back from Madrid so I telephoned them Tuesday to report the issue, but having finally picked up the receiver after 15 minutes they never called me back. I then sent an email first thing Wednesday to which I am still awaiting an answer. As it is now Friday evening and nothing is showing on my bank statement I assume everything is okay, but it would have been nice for Travelex to physically acknowledge the problem and do something to ensure that my bank account would not be debited. I shan’t be using that service again; the card has been cut up into small pieces and put in the bin. That is twice Travelex have let me down now.

A fashionable weekend

I am staying in tonight but for my viewing pleasure tomorrow - Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie. Can’t wait to see what fashion tips I get from Patsy and Edina…!

The rest of the weekend holds for me a budget revisit and a big planning session for the rest of my fashionista year. 


(To see Lily’s previous diary entries simply enter ‘lily currency solutions’ on your search engine or visit the Currency Solutions  page)