Southern Yacht

My little take on plus size fashion, life, travel and smurfs

Thursday, 30 April 2020

It's ok...not to be ok

It's ok not to be ok

Well, it's been a while hasn't it? I had so many posts saved as drafts that I was going to publish in March and April. But then lockdown started and suddenly everything I wanted to write all seemed frivolous and irrelevant. I took plenty of photos, but words seem to escape me!

April 2020 pictures

5 weeks in and I've started tentatively thinking about blog posts again. I'm not planning to write much about how this has impacted my life and all our lives - my blog isn't a space where I'd feel comfortable talking about that. Instead I'm just going to share some images that friends have shared with me that sum up how I feel much better than I can ever express in words.

We are not in the same storm

Productivity

Looking at my draft posts, a lot of them are travel based - would people would want to read them when travel at the moment seems like a far away dream? But then - I'm enjoying spending time reading about places I've visited, places I hope to visit in the future so maybe someone out there might like reading about our travels.

View from a plane window


And there's nothing much else to add other than look after each other - and remember to look after yourself.

Cathy
xx

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Tuesday, 25 February 2020

A visit to Outside-In Food Court in Portsmouth

Outside-In Food Court - Southampton Bloggers Event

I was recently invited with Southampton Bloggers to visit Outside-In Food Court in Portsmouth. I haven't been here before, but had heard so many good things about them that I must just have squeaked a bit when I saw the invite!

Outside-In Food Court was established in 2019 and can be found on Middle Street in the heart of the city. Housed in a converted warehouse, Portsmouth's only dedicated indoor food market is a vibrant and informal dining concept. With a variety of street food dining including vegetarian, vegan and gluten free options plus live music, it's become the go-to venue for good food. It's a cashless venue so just make sure you bring your cards (and a healthy appetite) along with you.

Outside-In Food Court, Portsmouth

There was a lovely friendly greeting on arrival which was very welcome on such a wet and blustery day! After choosing our drinks and getting settled, April the owner greeted us and gave us an intro to Outside-In and the vendors. It really didn't feel like a converted warehouse - the atmosphere and decor was warm and inviting and it's obvious a lot of thought and care has gone into creating this space.

Outside-In Food Court, Portsmouth

Outside-In Food Court, Portsmouth

Outside-In Food Court, Portsmouth

Live music at Outside-In Food Court, Portsmouth

This was a plastic-free environment. Laid out on the tables for us were paper plates and wooden forks, everything was either bio-degradable or recyclable. You can even crush your own can ready for recycling, I completely forgot to have a go at this - next time!

Now at this point, I think we all started to feel more than a little hungry. All the vendors have open kitchens so you can watch the food being prepared. After having a peek at them cooking and reading the menus, I was starting to making a mental note of some of the dishes I was looking forward to. I also have to say at this point, sorry if you're reading this with an empty tummy! The food was epic and I can only hope my photos do them justice.

Street food vendors at Outside-In Food Court, Portsmouth

Street food vendors at Outside-In Food Court, Portsmouth

Street food vendors at Outside-In Food Court, Portsmouth

Dumpling Dumpling

Dumpling Dumpling at Outside-In Food Court, Portsmouth

A firm favourite - Chinese dumplings with a fusion twist. The owners Nat and Dan are so friendly and happy to explain everything to you. Their sharing platter was the first one on the table and to be honest, our jaws just dropped. It's easy to see why they won an award for Best Street Food in Hampshire. The dumplings were just melt in the mouth and perfect bite size portions. You can mix and match dumplings with choices such as Beef Bourguignon, Pesto Mac and Cheese, and Hoison Not Duck (vegan friendly).

Dumpling Dumpling at Outside-In Food Court, Portsmouth

Arepa2Go

An authentic Venezuelan kitchen in the heart of Portsmouth? This was my first time trying Venezuelan food and hopefully not the last. Corn pocket sandwiches which were gluten free and so so soft! Packed full of delicious flavours, this chicken, avocado and cheddar cheese combination was a winner along with the fried plantain slices as well.

Arepa2Go at Outside-In Food Court, Portsmouth

Arepa2Go at Outside-In Food Court, Portsmouth

Arepa2Go at Outside-In Food Court, Portsmouth

Natty's Jerk Kitchen

A small family run street food business based in Southsea. This was one of the vendors I had my eye on as I love Caribbean food and wow! They did not disappoint. Curry Goat Fries were the standout dish for me along with Vegan Cauli Wings and the Caribbean speciality of Festivals - small fried dumplings made with cornmeal, coconut milk and spices. These were absolutely gorgeous and so so more'ish. I honestly think I could have easily eaten another portion of these.

Natty's Jerk Kitchen at Outside-In Food Court, Portsmouth

Natty's Jerk Kitchen at Outside-In Food Court, Portsmouth

Breeno's Kitchen

Indian-Pakistani street food, described as food 'without borders'. I just knew I was going to like everything here as soon as I saw it. The Masala Fries were so unexpected and a perfect combination. Not forgetting the Chickpea Curry and Onion Bhajis which were a hit on our table.

Breeno's Kitchen at Outside-In Food Court, Portsmouth

The Panormous Pizzeria

You can't go wrong with pizza and pizza makes most people happy. For me, it has to be a thin base and when it's half and half with quality Italian ingredients like this, I am one very happy bunny!

The Panormus Pizzeria at Outside-In Food Court, Portsmouth

One Tonne Burger Co

Last but by no means least was One Tonne Burger. Definitely not one for the vegetarians and vegans amongst you. In the London burger scene, they're known as one of the best burgers in the capital and you can see why. The beef is a minimum of 35 days dry aged and butchered and minced in-house. You can be confident you're getting the best here! This was juicy and mouth-watering and everything a burger should be.

One Tonne Burger Co at Outside-In Food Court, Portsmouth

The food court concept is ideal if you're with people who don't like the same things as you. My partner hates pizza, I LOVE pizza. Therefore this is a perfect destination to keep everyone happy. Plus why stop at one? Pace yourself and you can go on a culinary trip from the Caribbean to Italy, with a stop over in Venezuela.

Outside-In Food Court, Portsmouth

Although it's situated in student focused area, Outside-In appeals to all ages. During the time we were there I saw young and old, families and plenty of extremely cute dogs! Definitely worth a detour from your normal high street restaurants - and you'll be helping to support a local business as well.

Outside-In Food Court, Portsmouth

Southampton Bloggers at Outside-In Food Court - photo by Alice Spake


A big thanks to Outside-In Food Court and Southampton Bloggers for the invite (I'm still dreaming about those curry goat fries days later...)

Thanks for reading
Cathy

*Invited for the purpose of this review, but all thoughts and comments my own
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Thursday, 20 February 2020

The Three Musketeers: A Comedy Adventure at Nuffield Southampton Theatre, City

The Three Musketeers: A Comedy Adventure from Le Navet Bete

It's currently half-term here at the moment. Finding ways to keep children (and adults) entertained can be challenging at the best of times. When you add in the glorious February weather as well, you'll need to find something pretty special. The Nuffield Southampton Theatre City has the perfect solution with a comedy adventure that transports you back to 17th century France.

Created by the award winning Le Navet Bete, The Three Musketeers: A Comedy Adventure* is a tongue in cheek retelling of the classic Dumas novel. It doesn't seem possible to squeeze a 700 page book into a two hour play but they do. Complete with a Monty Python, slapstick comedy twist, a cast of four and 112 costume changes!

As you can imagine, with such a small cast, it's a very physical show. The stage is set with a giant tree house over multiple levels. It starts with four friends acting out the story of the Three Musketeers in the tree house wearing their mum's curtains as tabards and riding bicycles and scooters as horse. As the play evolves, it becomes more and more real and ends with the cast in the full Musketeers uniform with swords.

The Three Musketeers: A Comedy Adventure from Le Navet Bete

The Three Musketeers: A Comedy Adventure from Le Navet Bete

I can't even begin to imagine how much energy was needed to perform this show every night. From the multiple costume changes through to the energetic, choreographed scenes on the tree house, I'm just in awe of how they remember it all and made it look so seamless. It was obvious that they were four friends having genuine fun and being in a relatively small theatre meant we could see their facial expressions and share in the moments of laughter for ourselves.

The Three Musketeers: A Comedy Adventure from Le Navet Bete

The Three Musketeers: A Comedy Adventure from Le Navet Bete

There were definitely lines and innuendos that were just for adults (I'm sure the family in front of us had fun explaining when their child asked loudly what was happening in the shed!) But as the cast later said, it kept both adults and children entertained. Stand out moments for me included the character of Milady de Winter, a gloriously camp villain who stole every scene. Plus Abi the stage manager who stayed on stage throughout assisting with props and costume changes and handled a leaf blower brilliantly while all the time keeping a straight face.

The Three Musketeers: A Comedy Adventure from Le Navet Bete

I have to mention the duck hunting too - great audience participation and some v.funny unscripted moments. I'm just sad that I didn't get a chance to catch a duck!

A really personal touch was the cast coming out into the bar after the show to chat to the audience. Watching one little boy's face light up as he spoke to one of the actors was heartwarming. And it was interesting to hear the story of how the company go the name of Le Navet Bete. To take the time to do this after such a physical performance was really appreciated.

The Three Musketeers: A Comedy Adventure from Le Navet Bete

The Three Musketeers: A Comedy Adventure from Le Navet Bete

If you get the chance to go and see this - I'd really recommend it for both adults and children alike. It's exuberant, laugh-out-loud fun that's on at the Nuffield Southampton Theatre, City until 22nd February 2020.


Thanks for reading

Cathy

* Tickets were gifted for the purpose of this review


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Sunday, 16 February 2020

Cirque Berserk! Giveaway

Cirque Berserk! at Nuffield Theatre, Southampton

WIN A FAMILY TICKET AND MEET THE STARS

(AD) After sell-out London West End runs and two sensational summers at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Cirque Berserk! the UK’s biggest theatre-circus spectacular is back with a full nationwide tour.
And you could win a Meet-the-Stars Family Ticket to see the show free at the performance of your choice (subject to availability) at the Nuffield Theatre, Southampton from 24th to 29th March 2020.
Combining contemporary cirque-style artistry with adrenaline-fuelled stunt action, Zippos Cirque Berserk! is a danger-filled spectacle to amaze audiences from 5 to 95. 
Cirque Berserk! brings this treasured form of live entertainment bang up-to-date in a jaw dropping spectacular created especially for theatre. Witness the world’s most dangerous circus act with the legendary motorcycle Globe of Death – five motorcyclists reaching speeds of over 60mph within the confines of a locked steel cage. PLUS experience thrilling acts from over 30 jugglers, acrobats, aerialists, dancers, and daredevil stuntmen.


Cirque Berserk! at Nuffield Theatre, Southampton



Cirque Berserk! at Nuffield Theatre, Southampton

And add amazing physical comedy from the incredible 3ft 6in (107 cm) Brazilian acrobat and gymnast Paulo Dos Santos, former star of Ringling Brothers Barnum & Bailey Circus in America.  
Don’t miss out.  Enter now!  I have a FAMILY TICKET (two adults and two children) to give away.  As a Prize-winner, you’ll be given an exclusive photo-opportunity for yourself and your group to stand beside the motorcycle Globe of Death before a performance and take your own photos with the dare-devil riders on their stationary machines.  To enter, just head on over to Instagram (southernyachtcathy) and leave a comment with the answer to this question:

How many bikers ride inside the Globe of Death?
Giveaway closes on midday GMT Monday 9th March and a winner will be picked at random. Winner will be messaged for contact details so that Nuffield Theatre, Southampton can get in touch to arrange their show tickets. There is no cash alternative & the organisers’ decision is final. Not affiliated with Instagram
To book online, see https://www.nsttheatres.co.uk/boxoffice/cirque-berserk/287482 For National Theatre Tour dates and venues, show times and prices visit www.cirqueberserk.co.uk
Cirque Berserk! at Nuffield Theatre, Southampton

Good Luck!

Cathy
x
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Saturday, 18 January 2020

Moxy Hotel Southampton - launch event

Launch night party for the Moxy Hotel, Southampton

Southampton has a brand new hotel - and looking at the very pink logo and the nautical themes - it's going to be fun hotel!

Opening just before Christmas 2019, the official launch night party for the new Moxy Hotel in Southampton was a couple of weeks later in January. Now this is typically a gloomy month where everything feels just a little bit bleurghh, so a pick me up was well needed and the Moxy launch didn't disappoint.

Launch night party for the Moxy Hotel, Southampton

The Moxy Hotel chain is part of the Marriott Group. Aimed at the millennial market, the Moxy brands itself as a stylish, affordable, tech-savvy hotel. I was invited with the Southampton Bloggers and on arrival we were greeted by Hunks in Trunks. It's safe to say this immediately set the tone for the evening! Slightly disconcerted not to find any soft a drinks at first (esp as I was driving) but this was soon rectified. The launch party was based in the bright open lobby area which has comfortable seating, a video wall and a bar. A more secluded seating area at the far end with a table top football game, Jenga and gin bar was the perfect area to escape the crowds.

Launch night party for the Moxy Hotel, Southampton

Launch night party for the Moxy Hotel, Southampton

Launch night party for the Moxy Hotel, Southampton

The hotel offers free WiFi, 24/7 snacks (ideal for the late night munchies), an evening bar and apparently a cocktail upon check-in! We were treated throughout the night with hors d'ouevres, a huge sweet and snack table and wide selection of drinks.

Launch night party for the Moxy Hotel, Southampton

As I was driving, I could only take a sip of the chocolate cocktail that was being mixed on the first floor. Oh my goodness, I really don't drink, but that was gorgeous. Luckily I found a 0% alcohol beer so I was very happy.

Launch night party for the Moxy Hotel, Southampton

Launch night party for the Moxy Hotel, Southampton

A couple of the rooms were opened for us to have a peek into. One was set up as a karaoke room with jelly shots in the bathroom. The other was a pillow fight room. I have never seen so many feathers in my life (and so glad I don't have to clean that up!).

Launch night party for the Moxy Hotel, Southampton

There was also a caricature artist, a magician, confetti cannons and live music. The whole evening had a real party atmosphere and there was nautical theme throughout. Even the toilets had sailors caps on the door.

Launch night party for the Moxy Hotel, Southampton

Launch night party for the Moxy Hotel, Southampton

The Moxy Hotel is perfectly situated for Westquay Shopping Centre which is literally just a walk across the road. With the large number of cruise ships that also come to Southampton, it's going to be a great hotel for people starting or ending their cruise, those wanting a central fun location and anybody that wants something a bit different to a standard city centre hotel.

A big thank you to Moxy Hotel and Southampton Bloggers for the invite

(Oh - and this happened. A bit blurry, but you get the general idea...)

Launch night party for the Moxy Hotel, Southampton

Cathy
xx
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