But first, coffee. Rachael and I strolled over to Quarantacinque to pass the time as Deanna and friend made their way east. This tiny Italian gem served some serious caffé as well as sweet and savory bites. We stood at the counter (as Italians would) to wait for our caffeinated drinks and one delectable ham and cheese croissant; and to gawk at pretty much the most amazing wallpaper:
Later, while meandering back towards the tube stop, I had to remark how "normal" everything felt. I hadn't and I still don't really know London, and yet it, made sense for me to be there. There was an of course-ness to my mild ignorance. I felt at ease in my role as an outsider, and stimulated in my ability to observe, learn, and blend in. I was so distinctly aware of it all.
Hackney City Farm.
Broadway Market. Though it wasn't a weekend day, and thus market-less, the street itself had quite a few shops and cafés. I nearly bought a vintage book. I still think I should have.
Sutton House--a worthwhile stop.
And from there, Well Street Kitchen. Brew for Two would've been more convenient given the pouring skies, but they were closed due to flooding. (Point taken). We didn't care once lunch was served anyway. My leek & celeriac soup with pancetta was beyond.
When the rain finally did let up, we left our empty bowls, plates, and tea cups (so British) to mosey over to Hackney Wick. There was some killer street art as we got deeper into the industrial area; an awesome recycled clothing store, too, and the cozy Crate Brewery.
Inside, we enjoyed late afternoon brownies and beer--it's just what one does in the company of four when she realizes she wouldn't rather be anywhere else but in this gorgeously dreary city with her sister, so young, open, and brave, and her tenacious friend, tirelessly carving out a life of passions with such grace in yet another foreign city. There were big thoughts on that first full day.Paradise Garage for a late dinner. She'd heard great things.
one last digestif