I never feel self-conscious when I brag about good weather here. It’s London, after all. Spring/early summer is a time to rejoice, celebrate and proclaim to the world: IT IS BEAUTIFUL HERE. FOR A SECOND. And we enjoyed every minute, trying to stay outside as much as possible. For some reason I also consider Ikea “outside”.
On Saturday night I knew Bryan had planned a little birthday surprise. I hate surprises for me, or more I hate the idea of the impending surprise. I also get very nervous when I think it might involve other people. But he did the perfect thing. Just blocks from our flat, off the gorgeous high street, he took me to an Italian cookery (English English for “cooking”) school that’s associated with three neighborhood restaurants. I was giddy to be able to go and join a class and then a few minutes later four friends came in and joined us too. The menu was fish cakes, gnocchi with a sausage arrabiata ragu and for dessert, fried cream with strawberry coulis. I know. Fried cream. I think it had a fancier name. Chef Stefano was very understanding about my food-picture-taking hobby. Which it turns out I share with many others.
Yesterday we enjoyed a long lunch, and my first Pimm’s of the season, al fresco with some friends. Jonah is absolutely in his element when he has an audience. And I don’t want to hear it, grandmas- his faux-hawk is crafted from sunblock.
I pour one out for all those stuck somewhere because of this Icelandic ash-spewing volcano. It has certainly affected our friends who were on business trips or holidays- some stuck in very far-flung places. My colleague can’t leave yet for her honeymoon in the States. Other friends were supposed to fly to the States for family events or have family fly here. It’s been interesting and of course many people are in some state of limbo. Typically, the French picked an appropriate time to have some rail strikes and of course Germany is the only country in the world without a single television channel in English. People are just sort of miserable all around and just want to get home. As they should.