(As an aside, do I look like I'm doing my best impersonation of the Mona Lisa in this photo? Perhaps that's what her enigmatic smile is all about - a pregnancy glow...! Note how I like to rest my hand on my bump in an attempt to ensure people know I'm pregnant and not just hugely fat.)
Next stop, Starbucks (natch) for a little light refresehment in the form of a gingerbread latte, and a hazelnut & chocolate muffin which tasted just like a Ferrero Rocher, which can't be a bad thing.
And finally, the piece de resistance, the Albert Hall for Carols by Candlelight, tickets for which hubby had bought me for my birthday. Admittedly, the 'candles' were electric ones, presumably a health and safety thing since the orchestra were wearing 18th Century costume, including wigs which could have gone up in smoke at the merest hint of a naked flame. But not to worry, we had bigger fish to fry in the complaints department. All started well, as the choir kicked off proceedings with something lovely and classical in Latin (I don't claim to know anything about classical music and so won't try and tell you what it was), plus there was a little musical interlude from the orchestra, again something classical and lovely. Unfortunately, it went a little downhill after that as the conductor tried to tell jokes and then invited the audience to join in and massacre pretty much all of the rest of the carols (except the Latin ones, which the choir kept for themselves). Now, don't get me wrong, hubby & I love carols as much as the next man; however, what we don't love is carols sung by the next man. We had gone along thinking that we would be entertained by a fully-trained orchestra and choir so we could sit back and soak up the atmosphere. Instead, we had to contend with Joe Public belting out the tunes to the best and worst of their abilities. Bah humbug. It seems we are doomed as far as live carols go - last year we went to the carol concert at the church in Henley where I was constantly annoyed by a man in the row behind me jingling the coins in his pocket during each carol; this year we decide to go up-market and are no better off; next year we'll stay at home and listen to a CD and be grinches in the comfort of our own home.