Friday, 27 April 2012

Girl about town

“Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears!”...yes, I did just quote Scene II, Act III of William Shakespeare’s “Julius Caesar” (yes, I did have to look up the scene and act on Wikipedia...highly reliable!!). Anyway I thought I’d try and appear vaguely cultured; it will go downhill from here!

So the past couple of nights I’ve been out and about with friends and have some seriously good recommendations for all you lovely people! First and foremost is Fifty-Five Bar; this cocktail bar just off Camden High Street is my main guilty pleasure and resisting Happy Hour is nearly impossible. It’s got a real buzz (it’s always busy so sometimes there’s a bit of a wait for your cocktails...but they are so worth it!) and the music is perfect if you’re like me and like anything a bit rocky/ indie. A recent girly night out with the lovely Mel, Emma and Jess started with a round of ice cream cocktails; I recommend the’s gorgeous (here’s a sample of the menu for those who are interested: We also ventured in again last night, this time joined by Caitlin (queen of the cakes and chats) and Nick (we do occasionally allow boys to join on these little trips!); I tried my first Mai Tai and have found yet another drink that I love! Both evenings resulted in us moving to our local Wetherspoons, otherwise known as “Ice Wharf”. Before you groan and roll your eyes, anywhere that offers 2 pitchers of cocktail for £12 makes me very happy! 

Second recommendation for you anyway; for those of you who have not heard of it let me introduce Proud, Camden ( This is one of my favourite clubs in London and you’ve got to love a student night that has both live bands (indie for me again) followed by brilliant DJs who seem to cover a whole spectrum (or should that be spectra?) of musical genres. For those horsey people amongst you the whole club is set up in a disused stable block and all the looseboxes have been kept for use as seating areas...even better each stable has been named after a famous racehorse (imagine my excitement at seeing the names Desert Orchid and Red Rum the first time I visited!).  The whole night was absolutely fantastic although my feet are still recovering from wearing stupid shoes...will I never learn?

I do seem to have a sign on my forehead saying “Old Creepy Men – Apply Here” (or maybe just “Desperate”) but after being interrogated about my football knowledge at the bar at Ice Wharf and the whole group of us being chatted up with the line “Hello ladies...I feel like a foreigner standing here” by some 40 year old (this was on the girly’d be ever stranger if it’d been when in a mixed group!)  I decided that there is definitely something wrong with me (stop saying “I told you so” Misses Mel, Jess, Emma and Caitlin). My theory to counter this and find romance caused so much hilarity amongst my flatmates that I was told that I had to share it. It involves my next recommended London destination, the Kentish Canteen, but I’ll talk about that in a sec; you just need to know that it serves amazing food and tea and is really rather wonderful. My plan is to make that my “local” and spend lots of time in there with pots of tea and intelligent looking books while wearing a tea dress and pearls. By some coincidence a tall, dark, handsome, young chap with beautifully tailored suits will also spend far too much time in there until one day our eyes meet across the room and he buys me a cappuccino...oh dear I’m turning into Bridget Jones (I did just buy the perfect dress for it though...sleeveless shirt dress with a blue and white floral pattern).

Daydreaming aside I’ll now tell you all about this lovely little restaurant/ cafe. It was destined to become my favourite place on earth when I found out it served brunch ‘til 4pm (little fact about me...I love brunch and afternoon tea...forget breakfast, lunch and dinner!) and then I tried the food. This morning Caitlin and I delighted in brunch at 12 (only one of us had to get up for 9 o’clock lectures); French toast with maple syrup, bacon and pistachios is definitely something I shall be eating again, especially with tea and followed by choccy brownies (and the remains of Caitlin’s apple crumble). The whole feel of the KC (I can only say Kentish Canteen so many times) embodies everything I love about this part of the capital with its friendly staff, arty photos on the walls and fresh, bright colour scheme. Here’s the link for you all:

Now I realise this is a ridiculously long entry with no piccys (my laptop’s refusing to play nicely and rotate the photos Caitlin kindly sent me from last night) and I apologise for this profusely; just one more thing that I love at the moment...look up Daughter on Youtube...especially “Youth”. I now really need some sleep as tomorrow I’m going to attempt to work and maybe go for a walk on Hampstead Heath if this weather EVER cheers up (I love England but why must it rain as soon as the words “hosepipe ban” appear), plus I really need to tidy and clean my, fun, fun!

Sweet dreams beautiful people!

PS Tomorrow if I get time I really must tell you about the joys of Innuendo Bingo...and see if I can get hold of the video footage!

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Farewell to the countryside and hello to London!

I think I'm in love...
I’m writing to you from my really rather messy room in London (I’ve only been in a few days and already every surface is covered in on earth does one accumulate so much of it!). Since returning to the capital I’ve found myself swamped with a hundred and one neurological terms so decided that the best thing I could do is to head to the shopping Mecca that is Oxford Street for a little therapy! Needless to say that after an hour in Topshop I left with a lighter purse and a dress for the May Ball that I did not need (it is beautiful, floaty and with a lace back). It was definitely one of those moments where I knew I had to have it just because I didn’t want to take it off! I did manage to restrain myself for the rest of the trip (it was hard though as there are so many beautiful clothes out there at the moment, mainly lots of little summery dresses in pretty floral prints and linen blazers and the like!).

I’m now facing the consequences of my little trip out as I have a mass of lectures to write up; of course I’m currently ignoring those and writing this instead. I love procrastinating! My other option to avoid is to colour in pictures of brains which I shall probably start once I’ve posted this...yes I think I have regressed to being a 6 year old again.

Of course there's a hat!
Hip flask!
Anyway I did promise to describe Caitlin’s and my adventures at the point to point; for those of you uninitiated with the rural social life this is one of the highlights of the year (well for me anyway) and involves horse racing over jumps with betting and drinking and far too much food! Our attempts at betting weren’t brilliant (it’s a mug’s game anyway) and I hate to admit it but Caitlin’s skills at picking horses were far superior to mine (so much for all this money training to be a vet)! That aside my spirits were kept up by frequent swigs of homemade sloe gin, free wine from the hospitality tent (thanks to my stepsister for getting us in!) and a rather delicious hot choccy avec Baileys...divine! This was accompanied by my mother’s picnic which resulted in me ending up eating so much food that I felt slightly ill, but who can resist homemade quiche, lemon tarts and Caitlin’s and my butterfly cakes! Even better I got to spend the day wearing my Barbour jacket (enough pockets to fit a hip flask, sunglasses and a bottle of wine in...just the essentials!) and a tweed flat cap (hat alert!). Brilliant day with decent weather (even maybe to “sunbathe”) but rather exhausting as demonstrated by the fact that I went to bed at half 6 that evening and did not wake up ‘til 7:30 the next morning!

Think this says just how tired we were...
Just thinking of what else I can bore you lovely people with! I’ve got a TV recommendation for you all actually; much as I hate to promote American sitcoms I have to say how much I’m loving “2 Broke Girls”, all about two very different girls working in a Brooklyn diner trying to find the money to start up a cupcake company. It’s not the most original concept I know but thoroughly enjoyable and for those of you who were fans of “New Girl” it’s definitely the programme to give you that fix of American girlie comedy that we’ve come to crave! Here's a link just to save you some time (knowing how lazy I am, I just assume everyone else is too): .

Hmm I’m thinking time to colour for a while then bed (9am lectures and then work...may even attempt to go and use the gym equipment that we have at uni...I’ll let you know how that goes!). I’m one of these people that can’t sleep unless I’ve read for a few minutes and at the moment my current bedtime reading is “Vet in a Spin”, one of the brilliant James Herriot books. For those of you who aren’t quite as animal obsessed as Yours Truly then you may have missed out on this wonderful series of books, which combine tales of humour, nostalgia and occasional sadness in the beautiful Yorkshire Dales. Not intellectually taxing and a great comfort read so perfect for just before bed!

So I suppose that’s all from me today! Not sure when I’ll ext get time for this as I need to get my head down but knowing me it won’t be long before I start procrastinating. Ciao!