New client: Lesley Stones - Freelance journalist - photographer and traveller

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The world through my eyes.

Welcome to my website!  I'm Lesley, a freelance travel & leisure journalist based in stunning South Africa. Which means no matter where in the world I visit, it's always a thrill to come back home. Here you'll find some of my travel articles, hotel and lodge reviews and my quirky, warped and opinionated ideas on life, love, cheesecake and everything else crucial for survival. Check out my theatre reviews too - you may think I'm harsh sometimes, but I reckon I just tell it like it is!

If you want to follow me on Twitter, I'm on @lesley_stones

Have fun, and travel safely.

Contact me

My Fat Friend

My Fat Friend t’s amazing how many jokes there about fat people.
Enough to stock an entire play with quips about this sole subject, ranging from witty one-liners and gentle teasing to mean and vicious barbs.
My Fat Friend is stuffed full of them, and part of me was laughing while another part found it all very judgemental. The success of this comedy depends on being able to laugh at someone else’s misfortune, which most of us can manage pretty well, unfortunately. Read review:

Mainlining on Madrid

Mainlining on Madrid It’s difficult to keep your mouth closed in Madrid.
Every corner reveals a building more jaw-droppingly gorgeous than the last. You admire one ridiculously ornate building in front, then turn to see an even more over-the-top edifice behind.
Madrid is one of the most architecturally stunning cities in the world, although it’s not the grandeur of its buildings that intoxicates. It’s the vibe on its streets as they bubble with exuberant life, making the Spanish capital so addictive that one trip will never be enough.  Read Article:

Delve into your history with DNA

Delve into your history with DNA There’s something quite fascinating about family trees and knowing where you come from.
We all imagine we’re related to some historical genius, a great author or famous explorer that explains where our own talents come from. Now DNA tests are no longer just for paternity disputes and criminal investigations, and a test can tell you where in the world your ancestors come from. Read Article:

Cheers to Sarajevo

Cheers to SarajevoWriter Lidija Marelic has a fascination with the effects of war on individual lives in times and countries far away.
Last month her play Waiting For Jack took us to Paris in 1939 where a French hooker and a starchy British soldier fell in love. Now we’re deep in the Bosnian warzone in Cheers to Sarajevo, as Yugoslavia erupts in ethnic civil war in 1991.
Read review:

Steve

Steve Here's me and my very lovely man, Steve Ormond, who fought so hard to beat off meningitis and then survive the series of strokes the illness caused.
He didn't make it.
He died on April 21 after such an incredibly brave battle and such determination not to leave me. He did it with grit and courage and humour and so much love that the last nine months were incredibly special for us, yet unbelievably cruel.
I love you Steve. I'm going to come and find you one sweet day.
Here's a piece I wrote about him:

Cine Shorts

Cine Shorts Sully: Yoh! As a frequent flier, I'm in love with Capt. Sully, the pilot who landed a plane in the Hudson when both engines conked. Tom Hanks is superb as Sully and director Clint Eastwood tells a taught tale of the investigation around the action.  ****
Me Before You: I loved this book, a real tear-jerker, and the film is a pretty good version. Really glad it's a Brit affair - Hollywood would have healed our quadraplegic hero. ****
Bridget Jones's Baby:
Pretty funny romp as the long-neglected Bridget suddenly gets lucky. Ignore all notions of realistic behaviour and laugh. Great cast of Rennie Zellweger, Patrick Firth & Patrick Dempsey.  ***
The Meddlar:
Susan Sarandon stars in this sugary sweet, often funny, story of a mum struggling with widowhood and an empty nest. Lightweight but loveable. ***
Captain Fantastic: Great fun movie raising serious questions about how to raise kids in today's crappy society. Viggo Mortensen is adorable as the offbeat dad  down in the forest. ****
Florence Foster Jenkins: Meryl Streep and Hugh Grant make an unusual pairing as the opera 'singer' with enthusiasm but no talent and a husband who always helps her reach her dreams. Sumptulously based on a true story, but it feels very superficial. ***
The Infiltrator: Good quality tense drama about Florida cops fighting the drugs trade, in the bad-hairstyle 1980s. ****
The Magnificent Seven: A fine remake of a classic old western, now with added racial equality. Still with some humour, lots of action and baddies getting whooped by the goodies. ****