It’s a little sad to know that when a door opens for you somewhere, somewhere else a door must also close. Balance, cause and effect, ying and yang, however you like to put it. It’s how I see HK- an adventure, an opportunity, but it also means a goodbye. My last two weeks here I’ve tried very hard to do all the things I love to do in London, and see all the peeps I’ll be missing when I’m in Hong Kong.
As a little ode to London, here is an A-Z of some of my favourites in London.
Automat for waffles.
Borough Market for everything – Square Mile Coffee at Elliots, chorizo sandwiches from Brindisi, sweets from Konditor & Cook, wurst, raclette, falafel… ah the list goes on…
Chelsea Harbour. I loved living here – walking around the harbour and along the Thames is meditative. And I love that when it’s windy, the buildings sing. Sounds a bit like when you rub a wet finger around the rim of a half filled glass… very pretty.
Deuce friendly pubs. There are certain areas that are more dog friendly than others – but being able to bring Deuce to a pub for a relaxing evening out is a real treat.
Eurostar. Being able to cross the channel to Paris with as much ease as commuting home from work. Stellar.
Fish and chips. I love a really well made battered fish….with lots of tangy lemon juice. Blasphemy in the UK I know, but I can’t stand soggy chips. Bleh. French fries, nice and thin and crispy are more my thing! But still, somehow a good old fish and chips is so London to me. Maybe cause hubby always orders it so I get to indulge in the fish without worrying about the chips!
Gordon Ramsay Royal Hospital Road. Divine. Just divine!
Hampstead Heath – for its rolling heath, for its dog runs and for Kenwood House, the site of many a musical evening.
Iambic pentametre a la Shakespeare in the park on warm summer evenings.
Jokes, the British way. Red Nose Day is a pretty unique thing in the western world – where people get together with humour to raise money for charity. I love the concept and I love the execution.
Kensington Gardens. Boy I’m going to miss this place. DH and I always went at least once a week (normally on a weekend) to walk Deuce and so he can play with the other dogs in the park. Winter, autumn, spring, summer… the gardens are a real gem. I’ll miss them so much in HK where there are venomous snakes and crazy people putting down poison on the walking paths.
London Wall – the actual wall built by the Romans around Londinium not the road named after the wall. I love this part of the City as it is where I spent most of my City life and I know it well.
Megan’s Cafe on New King’s Road. Many an afternoon has been whiled away sitting in the garden of Megan’s Cafe.
Nonya. I know it’s closed, but it was one of my very favourite places to go for dinner – awesome laksa, and conveniently placed in Notting Hill. Sad that it’s no longer there since it’s been hard to get my laksa fix ever since.
O for the circle of trust, the tree of trust, the nest…. lol. For my besties who I’m going to miss like the dickens.
Paramount Bar at the top of Centre Point (not an old favourite, but a new one since heading there with Meliss and B for our last girl’s night out before I fly off. :()
Queens. My friend Ellen suggested the Queen, but not being a royalist she really doesn’t make my favourite list! However, people being able to be openly whoever they are here is something quite special, be it gay, straight, bi, anything in between, all the races in the rainbow, genders, ages…. I’m not so naive to think that there isn’t still bigotry and cowardice (for truly prejudice is based on fear of ‘other’ and fear itself is cowardice), but London has such diversity making up the fabric of its society that there is alot of embracing of differences.
Richmond Park. Another favourite of DH and mine – and of course Deuce where he gets to run around like a crazed pug and drink all the brackish water he can find. Driving through Richmond Park early in the morning when it is all misty and you can just see all the deer resting in the meadows is pretty magical.
Socktopus, and by extension the Socktopods -all the lovely sweet knitters who I’ve met over the years through Socktopus, many of whom I now count as friends.
Tea. Not so much the tea but the ritual. I love the sheer Britishness of a cup of tea and that this ritual spans differences in gender, background and age. A true uniter.
Underground. London just wouldn’t be complete without the London Underground – no matter how rickety or illogical it may be.
Victoria & Albert Museum – a lovely gem of a museum with a great cafe!
Wahaca. My go-to eatery in Westfield. Reasonably priced, yummy and with delicious hibiscus agua fresca. Lots of great memories there – with my knitting pals and my movie pals.
Xmas in London. Perfectly calm, quiet and lovely.
Yeoman Warders at the Tower of London. So London.
Zulu the movie. Well, not the movie, since I can’t stand it and find it incredibly tedious but I love that DH and actually quite a few English men that I’ve met think it truly is the bees knees. Culture gap perhaps, but one of those things that puzzles and enchants.