On Sunday I went to the farmer's market. Green and yellow courgettes, pinks, fresh garlic and a massive box of Kentish cherries that we gorged on Sunday evening in front of Mad Men. This weekend I am heading to Norfolk, to scour the charity shops and spend some time with my family. Have a good one lovelies.
Wednesday, 28 July 2010
Tuesday, 20 July 2010
Hannah put it so beautifully earlier today, speaking of her own wonderful weekend, "One of those weekends that fills you up and keeps you full up for the week".
A fields full of tents and colourful bunting, my tent already erected by my kind hearted sister. Exploring the vast arena, tent after tent, stage after stage, in the woods under shady green trees and in vast fields. Friends there before me, friends arriving late. Multi-coloured sheep, a Tim Walker photo in real life.
News of two alleged rapes reaching us from home, worried boyfriends, parents, dampening the mood slightly, making the darker spaces seem darker, meaning I fretted slightly, alone in my tent at night. Rising in the morning, to a peaceful campsite, smiling campers with tousled hair and washbags on the way to the shower block, dark, cruel things seeming a million miles away.
Gems stuck to eyes and glitter dusted on cheekbones. Wellies and Wallies. Making new friends, creating weekend catch phrases, bumping into old ones. Crossing paths with colleagues, again, and again, liking them so much more in their sunglasses and stripes, shorts and red vests, than grey and suited in the office. Lying on the dusty grass in the sunshine, chilling to Laura Marling, Corrine Bailey Rae, Tom Jones. Sunburnt nose, despite my promise to not forget the sunscreen.
Swept away by The XX in a darkened tent. Swaying to the Temper Trap at sunset, wanting to be nowhere else, but there in that sun-kissed field surrounded by friends. Dancing and dancing and dancing, to Empire of the Sun and Florence and the Machine whilst packed tightly into the crowd, in the woods to Darwin Deez, in a hot stuffy tent to Yeasayer, manically and with careless abandon to Vampire Weekend on the final night.
Rising early on Monday morning, treading through dew wet grass to make our way home, or into work. Drifting through half a day at work in a sleep-deprived daze, coming gently, softly, back down to earth.
Thursday, 15 July 2010
Sunday, 11 July 2010
"I am not sure why this summer seems so vivid, with each day somehow more beautiful than the last. I only know that is the way it feels. The days are moving as if each hour is two, and every detail – a salad, a bunch of sweet peas or box of tiny broad beans – is somehow more rich than it would normally be. It is as if the colours, sounds and scents of summer have been turned up a notch."
Sometimes my own words aren't enough.
Nigel Slater wrote the above in last week's Observer and I don't think that my feelings about this summer so far could have been summed up any more eloquently than that.
Wednesday, 7 July 2010
After Ottolenghi we headed to Bourne & Hollingsworth, a basement prohibition-era style cocktail bar just off Charlotte Street. Again, somewhere I had wanted to go for ages but hadn't got round to. Floral wallpaper, mis-matched chairs, starched tablecloths - described by Time Out as like drinking cocktails in your granny's sitting room - and the most delicious cocktails, some of which were served in teacups with a tiny cucumber sandwich on the side! Definitely my kind of place. Relatively empty considering it was a Saturday night, but this just added to the feeling that we had stumbled upon somewhere special that only a select few knew about. And the fact that we weren't having to shout to hear one another speak meant we ended up staying for a second cocktail, and then a third, and then...
Tuesday, 6 July 2010
The Saturday before last I was taken out for the evening by M as a belated belated birthday celebration. We started with dinner at Ottolenghi in Islington, somewhere I have wanted to go for ages, after years of salivating over Yotam Ottolenghi's mouthwatering recipes in The Guardian. One of the best meals I have ever eaten. The dishes were all starter sized, tapas style, and I had the following:
Bread selection with olive oil
Baked baby artichoke and peas with barley, lemon, garlic, parsley and pink peppercorns
Stuffed courgette flower with ricotta, goat's cheese, and date syrup
Grilled English asparagus with poached duck egg, verjuice mayonnaise, pea shoots, mint and broad beans
Apricot and blueberry clafoutis
No photographs of the meal because I didn't want to interrupt the evening, the simple white surroundings, the midsummer evening light streaming in, the flickering candlelight from silver candlesticks covered in layers of dripped wax, the friendly staff (who actually offered us a choice between still, sparkling and tap water when we arrived - the down-to-earth-ness was so refreshing), the delicious food, the excellent conversation.
It was wonderful.
Friday, 2 July 2010
I love my new flat, but one of the hardest things, especially as we continue to hurtle through summer, has been no longer having any outdoor space. My balcony at the last flat was teeny, but in the warmer months it was a treasured space that allowed me to grow things in pots - sweet peas and herbs, french beans and cucumbers - and escape from indoors with an iced drink of an evening.
Now, I have to resort to wandering round my neighbourhood, peering over walls into lush gardens, or eyeing up abandoned plots, longing to claim them as my own.