It feels that we are well into 2021 despite only being a month in. Sadly nothing much will change in the UK in terms of Lockdown for at least another full month, but luckily for us there's plenty to do from the comfort of our own homes.
Throughout the month of January it seemed I was listening along to a zoom every single day! And it's great to see there's so many interesting talks coming up in the next few weeks. Here are my top picks;
A free talk on Queen Victoria's Death - the 120th Anniversary on the 2nd of February.
The next lecture in the series of England's Tudor Reformation on the 3rd (you can also watch the previous two talks online).
Another talk at Gresham is on Giotto and the Early Renaissance. Perfect for those of you who want to get out of the UK and virtually visit Florence. 16th February, free.
It's free talks galore this month! Guildhall Library's Online Talk: The City by The Book is another one I've signed up for on the 17th. It's going to be a busy month! Book here.
And it's not over just yet. Kensington Library's Lodging in Georgian London with Gillian Williamson, takes place on the 19th.
To finish off, how about a virtual tour of the Billingsgate Roman House and Baths. I did an in-person tour a few years ago (remember those?) and it was fascinating. Book here.
I had a fantastic cook at home meal kit from Hoppers last month. Actually two - their vegan set as well as their paneer kothu. Both were very tasty. If you fancy a night off cooking, I highly recommend them for authentic Sri Lankan food. From what I gather it's very popular so make sure to order well in advance.
Another food recommendation this month is Pizza in the Post from Pizza Pilgrims. They provide all the ingredients (with ready-made dough) to make your own pizza, and if you buy four, it works out at just £8 per pizza including delivery which is a bargain.
Even though I miss visiting museums and art galleries, I've been so impressed with what some of them are offering online, especially the National Gallery. February is no different, and they've got a jam packed month of online talks and lectures. Have a look at their events page here but a few of my suggestions are;
Crossing borders - Albrecht Dürer’s Renaissance (free)
Stories of art - Module 4: 1600-1700 (six weeks, £175). I've done these 'in person' a few years ago and I've been doing all their online ones this time round. They are so interesting and there's a real mix of lecturers, plus it doesn't matter if you haven't done the previous modules.
Their Talk and Draw sessions also look fab, but sadly I have no artistic ability.
I'm so happy to see the back of Dry January. I definitely did not partake, I'm more for a Try January and used the past month to try some new and exciting wines. But, for those of you who are staying off the booze a little longer, why not join this free talk on the 9th - London and Gin by the London Metropolitan Archives.
Or, if you think giving up for another month is a ridiculous idea, how about matching cocktails with art? I recently discovered the Frick Collection and their Cocktails with a Curator - their fab!
And to finish my suggestions of the month of February, here's something to keep the boredom at bay if you're struggling with the current Lockdown. I recently bought a subscription to Readly - which pretty much means I can read every single magazine and newspaper (online) for the price of one subscription. It's about £8 a month (I think they have a 2 month free trial) and you can have the likes of Country Living, Good Food, Decanter, BB History Magazine and loads more on your iPad! Anyway, I've definitely got my moneys worth and will carry on my subscription for the rest of the year.
Take care and enjoy the month of February
Heard in London