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Room Service, Le Manoir

Not long ago I took a little trip up to Oxford.

I’d been asked to give a talk at the University on Women In Business, and blogging as an industry.

What better excuse could I possibly ask for, to spend a couple of days in one of Britain’s most beautiful cities?

Also a rather handy excuse to visit Le Manoir; somewhere I’ve wanted to go for a while!

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A country house hotel run by Michelle starred chef and all-round fabulous Frenchman; Raymond Blanc.

Custard, my fella and I drove the short distance up from the capital and checked in around sunset.

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 Skinny jeans

Soft cashmere cape // OTK boots

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We made our way through the winding, saffron yellow corridors to our garden room.

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A palatial room I could quite happily move into for some time!

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Complete with cosy bed for Mr Custard.

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Which, of course, he ignored completely.

Bagging the big one for himself.

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Along with the welcome treats!

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We all dropped off our bags and strolled out to explore the grounds.

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Thrilled to be out in the countryside, Custard made himself very much at home.

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Whispered “chase me?”

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And I had to oblige.

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We took it in turns, and soon covered every inch of land anywhere near the hotel.

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Very, very happy to be back together after a week apart.

Oh, it was nice to see my boyfriend too.

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We left Custard snoozing upside down in his bed, he grunted goodbye and we drove into Oxford for my talk.

In front of a packed room of brilliant girls, I wittered on about my beginnings, my experience of the blogging world and my thoughts on a growing, green industry that is almost entirely run by independent women.

I spoke for a little over an hour, and then answered a multitude of questions and we chattered away for quite some time.

I left with an arm full of flowers, a head full of ideas and a heart bursting with inspiration.

There’s something about talking at universities I find so exciting, it’s so interesting to meet young women so full of potential and ideas. I find it so wild to think that only a few years ago that was me… I wonder what I would have done differently if a blogger had given a talk back when I was wondering what to do with my life?

I feel so lucky to be able to call this my career, when I started it was just a distraction, a creative little hobby to enjoy outside of work.

The talk wasn’t recorded, or I’d share it. Perhaps I should record my own? Would you be interested in hearing it? Perhaps I should do another, updated version of my “How to start a blog” post.

After the talk we had planned to head into Oxford for dinner, but having traveled across half the globe that morning I was far too tired.

Instead we plumped for room service in bed.

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Dinner as a family, with Pretty Woman on the TV.

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Complete with Monsieur Blanc’s wicked Millionaire’s Shortbread for pudding.

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Completely, totally, utterly exhausted, I fell asleep covered in crumbs and slipped into dreams about pelicans in graduation gowns.

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