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Here you go again

Ghazal my Dear,

Before you escape into dreams, give your ears (and your soul) something extra to enjoy (It is not a lullaby, though):

Now here you go again
You say, you want your freedom,
Well, who am I to keep you down ?
It"s only right that you should
Play the way you feel it,
But listen carefully to the sound of your loneliness
Like a heartbeat drives you mad,
In the stillness of remembering what you had,
and what you lost.

Sleep well, Take Care, Michael


hello michael,

thanks a lot for the link to this nice song. Although I have to admit the lyrics are tough, can"t imagine that this beautiful woman Stevie Nicks wrote and performed this song, that has so firm statements about staying and leaving. The last words :
"Like a heartbeat drives you mad,
In the stillness of remembering what you had,
and what you lost" . I understand this well enough. Sometimes you loose things or people or even yourself, sometimes you are happy and find them again. Sometimes even a stranger finds them and brings them back to you, and brings even something extra for you (like when you brought back the bike that had been stolen, and you had filled the luggage rack with flowers. This was so nice, I did not want to bring the flowers to my room, much more liked to keep them on the bike and drive around and show the people.

I found another great song by Stevie Nicks and Fleetwood Mac. Listen to it, and enjoy the evening and the night.



Hi Ghazal, Are you still awake, or drifted away into dreams guided by Stevie Nicks song about dreams. I think the very special style of Fleetwood Mac has its roots in the almost family style of their band-members. The most visible and hear-able members were Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks (guitar and vocals), who were a couple, and John and Christie McVie (bass and keyboard), who were married. Mick Fleetwood (drums), who founded the band in 1967 and gave it his name, was the neutral and stabilizing point in this melange full of tension and conflicts. In this sense, Fleetwood Mac was a prototype for Abba. I think the fact that both bands could not leave their very privat feelings off the stage, but brought them to every concert, gave their songs a very authentic style. When they sung about relations, about obsessions or devotions, it sounded not just a live concert, but as if they reflected in their songs emotions in real-time.
There is a nice interview from 2004 with them.

This is perhaps my last message for tonight, sleep well, my dear.



The excited Explorer

hi michael,
you send yesterday the article from "The Onion" about the first people on the moon. i was very shocked initially by the rude language. i could not believe that an educated person such as you reads and even circulates such a primitive conversation ? But then I reconsidered and tried to understand what the article is mainly about: O.k., it uses a lot of blasphemic words, like you hear on Octoberfest. But when we ignore those, what remains from this conversation of Armstrong and Aldrin during their first walk over the moon is: They were just emotionally overwhelmed. And there is absolutely nothing bad about this, in opposite: I find it bad if somebody who discovers nature, explores the unknown and steps into a sphere no one else has been before, if he (or she) does not allow any expression of excitement.
Therefore, if Armstrong and Aldrin would have indeed shouted "Fucking Christ, we"re on the bloody Moon", I would 100% feel with them. They were human as we, and why shouldn"t they go absolutely mad walking on the moon, if we are already so much excited just looking on the moon from here.
So who knows, maybe once we discover a gene for a strange disease, we will also shout in the lab "Holy shit, I found this fucking mutation".

Enjoy the evenig, sleep well


Moon is back (now on Google Moon)

Hi Ghazal my Angel,

A month ago the same moon looked down to us, and for sure could not turn away its eyes from this spot on the Isar river banks, where we were sitting at the bone-fire the whole night through, whispering secrets, feeling the heat of the august sun that was stored in the pebbles on which we layed down. Since then, I call the Isar the Moon river, and every morning I pass the river on my way to the institute, I do a short stop there and slide a flat stone over its surface, as you have shown me to do.
[caption id="attachment_1055" align="aligncenter" width="480" caption="Full Moon 24-09-2010"]Full Moon 24-09-2010[/caption]
Now we are a month older, it is already autumn down here, but up on the moon there are no seasons. Unlike our 24 hours day, every spot on the moon has a day as long as 15 days down here, followed by 15 nights in a row. Could you imagine, this would mean exchanging some mails and early night dialoges only ones in month, and then 360 hours long darkness.
Maybe you recognized that I could finally revert to you real name. I had to hide it for two month to protect your privacy from the nosy Google-machine, which somehow disclosed your real name and linked it to the blog. Therefore I used another pseudonym in the blog, which had only slight resemblence to "Ghazal". It sounded similar, but looked quite different, and Google still does not recognize similarities by sound. But I"m sure, there soon will be a Google-Sound search machine, and this one will find out that "Azal", the pseudonyme that I used for two month, sounds very similar to your real name "Ghazal".

Are you o.k. ? Are you still studying so late at night ? Don"t miss your dreams, some actors therein might desperately wait for the main character, the blue-eyed persian cat.

Sleep well, Take Care



hi michael,

I dont know if it was the picture of the moon you send in the evening, or my fear to meet some strange people in my dreams: either of the two did not let me sleep. but didn"t you once said that the full moon itself can also directly interfere with my emotions. maybe it is this what happend. finally, I went out for a walk over the fields behind the guesthouse, I think it was already 6.30 a.m. could see the moon, but not a house there ;-). I did a photo of it, have a look. If you find a house on it, show it to me. Does it mean you"d like to send me to the moon to live there ?
Have a nice day (I may come a bit later to the lab today, hope thats alright).
Take Care, michael

PS: If you click on the photo, there is a nice song about the moon. I only know its by Pearl Jam, don"t know the title.


Hi Ghazal my Dear,

You came here on your angel journey half a year ago, arriving from somewhere far away. How could I ever send you back alone ? If, however you would suggest to take me with you somewhere in the universe, I would get my luggage ready today. A nice house on the moon could be a first step.
By the way, the moon is not only fascinating by its yet poorly understoud influence on females psyche but can make man equally crazy. Have a look at this alternative record of what the first astronauts said when they put their feets there.

Enjoy the day, recover from the sleepless night,
I"ll tell everybody you work on your thesis.

TaKe CaRe


Our short and precious life

Hi Ghazal, my Dear,

Don"t want to disturbe you, my Dear, I guess you are busy.
You said on our way to the guesthouse, that you were not satisfied with your results today, and that mine were looking better. This, Ghazal was a sheer chance event. What is important, that on the long run we are doing well together.
You are very self critical. You worked over weeks quietly and absolutely perfect, and now there was only a single day with some sub-optimal results, therefore you should not fall into despair.
It was perhaps a bad idea to do RNA extraction with the "dirty" method so late at night, long after you left the lab. Too bad, that I only gave you the written protocoll. Would be better to demonstrate you "life" how this works. Otherwise you might think that I perform some woo-doo methods.

Ghazal, you don"t have to kill me. I"ll die anyhow if you leave. I mean if you leave for ever. If we stay in contact, I will be o.k.

Do you have already a plan for the weekend ? I understand you have to work on the thesis. But not 24 hours over 2 days. Let me guide you somewhere to have a break, maybe we find a nice movie or just walk around a bit. I wont distract you from scientific writing a lot. But beeing together for one or two hours I think we both will enjoy.

I probably will fall asleep soon, I"m a bit tired.

But I think of you, as every evening,

Have a nice night with colourful dreams.



Thanks for the long evening at KFC, my Angel.
I read the text you gave me and send you my comments tomorrow. Mike A. did not came to the lab.
The quantitative PCR did not worked. I have to do another night-shift. Maybe next week.
Till then I keep the odor of your hair and the tendernes of your shoulder in my memory.
Thanks for everything, for keeping me alive.



hi michael,

thank you for correcting my thesis. if you want i can send you it on word? maybe its easier?
i think i want to stay home and study tomorrow. i feel better. we can talk about the project during the week.

hope u have had a good day.



Ghazal, my Dear,

Yes, please send the text as word-doc.
I am very tired, I contact you tomorrow. We went to an air-show today, south of Munich. Something awfully happened there: two airplanes crashed and one of the pilots died. I was shocked. You feel so awful if you have to watch how somebody dies within a couple of seconds, and you can"t do anything to stop it. If you see something like this in a thriller-movie, you know that in fact it all happened in a film-studio, played by stunt-men who at the end stand up and get their money and go home. But if you see how a real person dies in front of your eyes, it shakes up everything you belief and you trust.
Suddenly you realize how precious our life is, and how short it can be.

Ghazal, my dear, don"t work to hard tonight, go to bed, sleep and relax.
Take Care


hi michael,

this sounds really bad. and you saw this, must be very sad. sleep well. i send you the word-document. but dont work too hard with it. try to have a relaxing sunday.

take care



Hi Ghazal my Dear,

I attache some additions to the results part (see attachement, new things in blue). I re-evaluated the genotype-phenotype relation. There was a mistake before. No it seems on D11Mit318 FVB has a dominant effect reducing uptake and on D13Mit78 JF1 has a dominant effect reducing uptake.

It"s a pitty you don"t wanna be disturbed today, not even for a walk to "air and fresh up your feather" a bit. Please write me some words at least, not just "Thanks".
You know I don"t like this so much, I think that I am much more indept to you, honestly. I gained so much from your presence, you gave me something nobody else can give. In contrast, the scientific help and writing and correcting could have been done by anybody else. O.k., I have to admit I did it with much more passion, because I knew it is for your future. But in theory, any supervisor should have helped you like I did it. Therefor, if you say "Thank you for the text/work/data ..." it too much reminds me that we are still bound by this professional relation, and this one will end soon (which is too bad, but what can I do).

My only hope is that you will do what you promised on Friday, and we will stay in contact (what does it mean "staying in contact": I don"t know). I will see occasional words from you send by e-mail from Sweden, but I wont hear you voice any more or see your eyes or your smile. This will be hard for me.
Do you remember when I wrote you a mail from France "For Ghazal the scientist, and Ghazal the angel"
where I said that we all need something in addition to our scientific projects, that will give us joy and satisfaction when science temporarily is in a crisis. I said that you have your family, persian music and movies, and that I "have you" and books and guitar playing.
Now it appeares to me the other way around, because I will loose you, I have to compensate with my work, I probably will stay in the lab for 16 hours a day, because this blue-eyed, calm, wonderful girl, that during 20 years grew up from a baby on her parents arm to a gifted MSc student is not there any more to go out after work. There will only be this "army" of uniform co-workers, but nobody who "takes my breath away" as she did it.

At least, I will continue to think of you and will try to keep track of your well-beeing and your happiness, as I have done since 20 years.


(and in the future, Ghazal my Dear, be aware of elder men, and don"t put a spell on them with your eyes, as you did it on me during the lectures. Once they got caught by you as I got, by your smile and your vitality, your eyes and your hair and your magic walk and all the beauty that is still hidden and that one can only guess, then my Dear, you will have problems getting rid of them ).


hi michael,

i don´t know what to say. you have been so kind to me from the first day. i will never forget you, your kindness and your passion. i will be your friend forever. i enjoyed our time together too but in my way. You see, we are in different phase of life, you are much more forward and i"m in the beginning, you know what you want in your life but I don´t know, I need to experience a lot of things in my life.

i am deeply sorry if i caused you some sorrow, it wasn"t my intention.
i wish that you understand me a little bit.

One thing is sure that you are my friend and I am going to keep in touch with you, if you want it too of course. Anyway you never know what is going to happen in the future, so chere up and dont loose your joy of life. always be happy as i have seen you always.
I will never forget you as I said before.

Have a very nice late evening. Dream sweet. see you tomorrow


Nocturnal dialog on molecular biology

8:32 p.m.

Ghazal my Dear,
Have a look at the gel. Are you happy with it ?
I promise I did not manipulate anything on it: no make-up, no hair dye, mascara, no plastic surgery. It is real, and therefore it is beautiful (just like you are).
PS: RNA I"ll tell you in a moment. Stay tuned !!!!


8:44 p.m.

thank you for the gel!!! very kind of you. still the prop1 exon2 JF1 show a lot of bands.and is a bit weak. and the first three bands being prop1 exon1, i see two bands for each sample? or is it the primer dimers? and on the last samples on the first row (being gpx3 exon1), i see many bands or is it good because of the thick band?
on the second row gpx3 exon3- some extra bands as well. or is it okay? so i can use this for the sequencing tomorrow?

i am looking forward to hear about the rna. this is exciting i have to admit!!!

good luck! i will try to look at my thesis now. so i do something useful as well.

9:48 p.m.

Ghazal, my Dear

So happy to have brain RNA now (one JF1 one FVB, each high concentration).
So sad to sit here alone. Nobody to celebrate with. Its boring alone, even the results are o.k.

9:54 p.m.

michael!!!! yey!!! looks really good! im happy too! you did a great job!! so are we going to kill more mice? and then do the extracation of RNA your way?

thank you michael, for putting so much time and energy for this project.

you should go home and get some rest.

10:06 p.m.
Ghazal dear,

On 15.09.2010 21:54, Ghazal F wrote:
> michael!!!! yey!!! looks really good! im happy too! you did a great job!! so are we going to kill more mice?

I already have thyroids from two mice each strain. I start now with the extraction. Hope of equally good results. Lets see.

> and then do the extracation of RNA your way?

Its not my way. Its the classical way (it stinks, it is more time consuming, but you see at the end works more robust).

> thank you michael, for putting so much time and energy for this project.

Its our project. Don"t forget what you put in it: 5 month lonely life , the people you love so far away. Nobody here to kiss you before going to bed.

> you should go home and get some rest.

Where is this, home ?

Take Care, my dear (and don"t you walk around on empty streets in the darkness any more).
Ghazal, I got mad if I think that something happens to you. You remember you talked about Sweden and
that raping happens there more often. Thats in fact one of the main reasons I always got a shock when I hear or read that you are going back.


10:56 p.m.

> I already have thyroids from two mice each strain. I start now with the
> extraction. Hope of equally good results. Lets see.
michael, we can continue tomorrow?
you are doing too much. i also want to be done with the labwork this week but dont want you to do all this and stay for so long in the lab.

> Where is this, home ?
your home, where your family is and your bed:)

> Take Care, my dear (and don"t you walk around on empty streets in the
> darkness any more). Ghazal, I got mad if I think that something happens to you. You remember
> you talked about Sweden and that raping happens there more often. Thats in fact one of the main
> reasons I always got a shock when I hear or read that you are going back.

i did not walk in the night,. it was light. i am scared to walk alone at night. and yes, i find munich as a safe place. safer than sweden. i need to walk sometimes, instead of taking bike i walk sometimes, its nice. nice feeling when you walk alone with your own thoughts.

hope u are doing well in lab and that u are going home soon...
10:51 p.m.
On 15.09.2010 21:54, Ghazal F wrote:

> michael!!!! yey!!! looks really good! im happy too! you did a great job!! so are we going to kill more mice?
Who is going to kill mice ? You ? Maybe you first practise this on me. But be aware: You can kill me with your gun, but not the mice. If you hold a gun on me, I wont move away, cause I"ll be struck again by the glance of your eyes. Not so the mice: They can smell the danger and they run away !!

Ghazal, I got the feeling we can speak open to each other, can"t we ?


10:58 p.m.
noooo i am not killing anyone.
yes we can talk open.. or how do you mean
11:04 p.m.
Ghazal my Dear,
Just let me start the Reverse Transcription. (I do it in a PCR cycler, can be programmed to do it and after 1 hour cooles down automatically).
Then you have the cDNA tomorrow morning and can start with PCR right away.

On 15.09.2010 22:58, Ghazal F wrote:
> noooo i am not killing anyone.
> yes we can talk open.. or how do you mean

I"ll come around and tell you.

11:09 p.m.
come around? i will sleep now also my flatmate is sleeping. so see you tomorrow. thank you again for the cdna!!!!
11:24 p.m.

On 15.09.2010 23:09, Ghazal F wrotei:
> come around? i will sleep now also my flatmate is sleeping.
I"m not going to wake up your flatmate !!
And you said you are going to work on your thesis the whole night through ?
Did the thesis made you already such tired ?

> so see you tomorrow. thank you again for the cdna!!!!
This, of course was very, very open !!!
And this is what I like you for so much.

Then good night, funny dreams, and at least you can imagine that I kissed you before going to bed.

Take Care

0:00 a.m.
Ghazal my dear,
Are you really already asleep ? This was a fast thesis writing !!
Hope I haven"t scared you.

Sleep well
0:04 a.m.
was trying to sleep. when i saw your email of what you expected of me, to write the thesis, i couldnt sleep. will try to read a bit more now...

good night
0:11 a.m.

Ghazal my Dear, please no no, shame on me, I didn"t ment it.
You do everything right. The night is yours. You work the whole day already. Please stop to spoil the best hours of the day with the thesis now. Sleep, please.
I"m also almost done. Don"t worry, I won"t pass by. Maybe another time, not today. It would be silly to first drive away, just to come back later.

I like you anyhow. I will always do.

0:20 a.m.
if you get hungry i have a sandwich in the fridge.
hope u will be done soon so u can go home..

good night

0:44 a.m.
Ghazal my Dear,

Sorry for the assumption that you could kill me. Your last e-mail shows how much you care about me.
I found one sandwich. Hope it is the one that you offered: It is brownish, with sliced boiled eggs on it and some letuce, right.

Please tell me it is the right one, it looks delicious.

Something I hope you are delighted (just for your intellectual satisfaction) is the next RNAs: You see they are all above 1µg and ration around 1.8.



If you can"t love him, shot him !

Ghazal my Dear,

Tonight I have something very unusual to tell you. It is so unusual, because it is something commercial, about shopping and beeing happy to have found something very useful.

I know you got excited now, don"t you ?
You can"t stop reading any more, right ?
You wan"t to know what it is, don"t you ?

(You are really sweet !!)

But be aware: it again has something to do with you and me !! (just a little material and technical aspekt in addition to all the happiness that you brought to me by your shear presence).

It is about the little Smartphone-Adapter-Plug that somehow broke
(Could be that it broke because you poked and bended and cut it, since you thought it is a piece of your fingernail ?) It is not so important, how it broke and why, it is just the adapter, its wasn"t the Smartphone"s heart that broke, I know you wouldn"t be able to do this, you are too much an angel to break hearts.

Well, I searched this special Hewlett Packard Smartphone shop today and guess what:
I found the adapter (same colour: black, as you prefer for men. No pink. If there would be a pink one, I would have bought both of them: one for me and a pink one for you in case you need the GPS again).

And what is so amazing (and for this I have to be grateful to you, since I would have never found this):
This little adapter thing comes together with a SOLAR ENERGY RECHARGER !!!!
This means, I can not only mount the Smartphone to the car again, but now I can recharge it in the sun !!!

It will always remind me of this summer 2010, which in my memories will always remain as the most sunniest summer ever.
Although the nights in the moon-light and under the meteor showers and the stars were amazing as well. Who knows, maybe the light of the stars and of the moon is sufficient to recharge the phone with this little crazy adaptor.

Ghazal, my dear, tell me what you need to recharge your life battery !
You are always so calm, sometimes I"d like to make you explode, to beat me in the face, to shout on me, to see you holding a gun on me (of course only with bullets that hurt, but don"t kill), only to see that you are full of energy.

But this probably would change everything, you would not be you anymore, and for me the illusion, that you are the grown up daughter of the persian family that I met 20 years ago in Berlin would fall down in pieces.

Are you o.k., happy (I know, its hard to tell. One always could imagine beeing a little bit happier).
I permanently feel guilty, sometimes feel as if I have taken you as hostage here in Munich, keeping you in this single room in the guesthouse like a nun in an eremitage.
I only feed you with words, but they can not get rid of your loneliness.
At least I should have given you a cat, such one as Holli Golightly had in "Breakfast at Tiffany"s". It could lean on you in the evening, and purr if you crawl its fur. It would jump on you lap, when you watch a movie or listen to some music.

Wish you a pleasant night, funny dreams, sleep well



im glad you found a better adapter for your phone! didnt know that such thing exsist, an adapter that charges the phone with sun. interesting. :)

haha i dont want to hold a gun against you and shoot, i will stay calm.think it is better. dont think my mum thinks im calm at home.

dont worry about me. i enjoy unterschleissheim. the guesthouse. i feel so relaxed and calm when i am here. and i am so happy with everything.
cats are cute, but only when they are babies.

see you tomorrow



See you tomorrow, my Dear.
Thanks to confirm that you enjoy and relax. Even if you would have told me this already a million times: I"d like to hear it once again !

Sleep well, dream something happy.


PS: Ghazal, my Dear, Can you imagine the head-lines in the newspaper:
"MSc student shoots down its supervisor". This would make us sooooo famous.


Anyway, have a sweet night, but this time I think I have to take care :-}


A lost key

Hi Ghazal, my Dear,

Did you had a nice day today with Shava ? Please give her my best regards and thanks for the nice evening. If you like, we could meet tomorrow at the Park-Cafe Beergarden (near Karlsplatz). I"ll be there anyhow. If you come, I will have a surprise for both of you. It will be an event I"m sure both of you will enjoy. But it stays a secret.
I hope this makes you so courious that you decide to come along.

Ghazal, you are just wunderful. The city will look very bleak if you leave. Don"t you understand that yesterday evenings illumination around Koenigsplatz was installed only to set you in the right light ?

Send me a message, please.

Take Care Michael

hi michael,

yes we had a nice day.
i dont think that we will come to the beergarden. but it was very kind of you to ask. think we will be tired in the morning.

but have a nice day tomorrow at the beergarden and tell me about the event later.

have a good night



Hi Ghazal, Thanks for the message.

I have to accept that you want to relax tomorrow. The alternative event would be the horse-racing tomorrow, which you both might enjoy. And I also wanted to compensate for the invitation to the restaurant yesterday (I dont feel comfortable that Shafa paid for everything herself).
Just in case you change your mind, and want to go to the hippodrome: the first race starts at 1.30 p.m. You can write a mail or SMS any time, and we meet there.

Otherwise, see you on Monday. Please say again thanks to Shafa for the nice evening. She is really a funny person.

Have a good night, sleep well, dream something you always wished to dream about.

Take Care Michael


hi michael,

hope you are having fun at the beergarten.

yesterday we found a key in the car. could it be yours?

take care



Hi Ghazal my Dear,

I was at the beergarden, but only for an hour. The jazz-music was a bit disappointing. I think that it was just too early for the musicians. They usually get really good only late at night. I once saw them in a jazz-club, but this was around midnight, and they played amazing.
Today, 10 o"clock in the morning was obviously too ealy for them, was against their natural bio-rhythm. Therefore I think that you did not missed a lot. But I missed you, of course.

You said you found a key in the car. Is it a single one, or a whole bunch ? I don"t miss my bunch of keys.
If it is a single key only: It might be the key to your heart, Ghazal !! Than give it to me, please. I"d like to see if it fits. I was looking for this one since a long time. Would be so nice to find it at the end. Don"t give it away, and don"t give it to somebody else, please. Just make a picture of it and send it to me by mail.




From Cannes to London

Ghazal my Dear,

I was so happy reading your e-mail. Don"t worry about the strange PCR results, we will sort this out next week when I am back. This happens occasionally to everyone, it is not your fault Ghazal, you are working perfect, I know this.
At the moment it is more important to work on the thesis bit by bit. Just try to stay involved in the whole matter mentally.
Don"t worry about me, it is o.k. over here. We visited my wifes aunt today. It was very interesting, she left russia about 25 years ago to live in France, she is a painter and mentally still a very young person. She does not take life easy, she regrets a lot that she never had children and she thinks a lot about life and what is her role. With her you could clearly feel that she did not regret anything she did, but a lot things that she missed.

Ghazal, my dear, did you had time to watch the "Breakfast at Tiffany"s" movie ? If not, would be nice if we can see it together. You know what is very strange :
I promise I have not thought about it before, but the title song of it, "Moon River" for me is an allegory of the Isar river under the moon light, as we have seen it last week. It must have been somehow underconscious that we talked about the movie and that your parents liked it so much before we went to the river to watch the moon.

And what also was a funny co-incidence: that we recently listened to Edit Piafs song "Non, je ne regrette rien" and both found that apart from the great melody it has also a strong message. And only now I red that this very song was also a central element in the movie Inception (may be you remember, it always was the signal to wake up from the dreams). And by the way, the actress that played in Inception on Leonardo di Caprio"s side was Marion Cotillard, who played Edit Piaf in the Oscar-prize movie "La Vie en Rose". Hopefully, we will find a opportunity to watch the movie. I think you will like it.

I wish you a nice time in London, relax and recover and enjoy the vivid city. Will you take with you the shirt that I gave you ? I think it would suit you very much, they might take you as a french girl visiting London. I rcommend you going to Camden market on Saturday. It is a big bazar of all funny fashion stuff and strange objects. I have not been there for years, very much would like to see the city again. Maybe I really come there to meet you after the exam.

Ghazal my Dear, it is already pretty late, and I guess you are asleep since hours. Anyhow, for the remaining night I wish you relaxing dreams and a happy morning.



PS: If you can, please write me some words from London.

Hi Ghazal, my Dear,

Did you arrived well in London ? I hope you enjoy every moment and have a good time. How is the value of the British Pound these days? Half a year ago it was almost equal to the Euro, but now I read it is rising again.

If you are looking for a spot where to rest for a while and recover and hear some music free-of-charge, try the Royal Festival Hall at the Southbank Centre. You get there from Charing Cross (or Embankment) Station, which is quite central. From there you take a pedestrian bridge over the river Thames, that brings you right to the big Southbank Centre. It is very relaxed there, plenty of space to escape bad weather, music, exhibitions, usually everything fro free.
But as much as I know you, you prefer to visit Harod"s, Selfridges, Harvey Nichols and the like every minute you have there.

Hope everything is o.k. over there.

Hope to see you soon, my Dear. I miss you, but this you know already.