For the love of marmalade... #fortnumandmason

If you love a luscious tasting marmalade...
we say, look no further than Fortnum and Mason.We have tried them all...from America, to Australia, to New Zealand and back again. Mr. and Mr. H have declared that no one does it as well as Fortnum and Mason. With each visit to London, Mr. H has a simple assignment, buy as much Forthum and Mason marmalade as you can fit into your luggage. The man never ceases to amaze me with what he can get into his luggage. If their is a will..there is a way. 

If you love a luscious tasting marmalade...
and orange is your flavour of are a few to tempt you. Even better...pick up a few as a Christmas gift with a few tins of Fortnum and Mason will be the best gift give ever..promise!

Sir Nigel's Vintage Orange Marmalade
 This classic vintage marmalade was made by Fortnum’s in the 1920s 
for actor-manager Sir Nigel Playfair, who asked for a bitter, thick-cut preserve for his toast. 
We met his request with this – a strong, substantial marmalade with a deep flavour 
and lots of chewy peel. The colour of dark marmalade is often achieved by cooking the sugar for longer; 
but we make it with two sorts of brown sugar instead, to give colour without overcooking. 
The result is a rich, citrussy, not-too-sweet flavour. A cheering sight on one’s breakfast table. 

An expats world..from Surrey to Saigon

 One thing I have learned in my 18 years as an expat is that you open a lot of doors. Throw in a few windows and you keep yourself pretty busy trying to keep your expat world in order. This thought came to me today as I assembled all my 'expat england' photos into one file. I admit there were quite a few heart strings that were pulled as I went along. Photos of family gatherings, expeditions into the English countryside and quiet sojourns into London are now collected into one file. I had to pinch myself, it's surreal to think of a time when I walked to the local train station to catch a 20 minute ride into London.

When we boarded the plane for Vietnam, leaving England behind, I found the easiest way to make the transition was to shut the door until I was ready to open it again. If I had made the transition from a Southeast Asian city to Saigon I would probably have left the door ajar. The differences would not have been so extreme. To move from Surrey to Saigon was a jolt to the senses, I knew I would need time to decompress, if I hadn't closed that door for a time I would have sat on the fence with one foot in each country unable to embrace what was in front of me.

I see it often in Vietnam, that dazed look in a new expats eyes, wondering where they are going, how they will cope and steady themselves for the new experiences ahead of them. I want to tell them it's a matter of doors and windows. You have to know when to shut and open them until you set yourself right.

As for me, the doors are open, the windows are up and I am once again moving through my expat world with greater ease. I know, because it brought me here, to the house below. I would pass it nearly every day on my bike ride into the local village. Every once in a while, just before I turned the corner from our street, I would slow down...stop..and snap a photo. I captured it in all seasons, my favorite being summer and winter.

My view today is very different as I ramble along the streets of Saigon but I feel so very fortunate to have had those days where I imagined the life beyond the garden, the windows and doors that graced this beautiful home. I still wonder...but from further afar...and am so very thankful for the time we had in England.

A passing view in Surrey, England...

From snowy Surrey to our mango coloured home in Saigon, 
Chateau Mango..

 where my English Pashley awaits.

Sending you 'beep, beeps' from Saigon.

until I return with another English memory.