Friday, 8 August 2014

Summer in the city

Yesterday I met a friend for lunch from Shake Shack which we ate on oddly arranged benches in St Paul's churchyard, Covent Garden. I then found myself signing up for yoga sessions (at last!), before exploring Seven Dials (where I finally stumbled upon Tatty Devine) bearing a tent. Upon realising how close I was to Soho, I decided to aim for music shops in pursuit of Einaudi. Along the way I encountered Foyles, where I proceeded to lose myself for a good hour or so. These days, I'm not much of a reader beyond Vogue, but I do still love a book shop, particularly when it stocks sheet music in abundance!

Pretty bunting & building in Seven Dials
One of my 'big' plans for the summer was to get musical; be that playing my instruments lots, finding an ensemble to join, recording or even writing my own music! However, for the first time in as long as I can remember, the summer holidays have been beautiful, so my time has been predominantly spent outside! I don't know whether I've not been in a writing mood, or whether being so busy has rendered me too lazy, but it truly has been a wonderful summer so far, with lots of time spent outdoors with family and friends. 

Unusually, I have spent little time alone (perhaps another reason for my written silence), and yesterday was one of my first little lone London ventures after a brief one that came out of running errands the day before.
If the thought of rifling through sheet music for the first time since graduating from my music degree wasn't exciting enough, the fact that said sheet music was stored in draws stacked so high that I had to climb a ladder to locate Bach's Partitas for violin really set me off! Up and down I went, gathering scores for pieces I've always dreamt of playing, and finally picking up a manuscript book (mainly for nostalgic purpose, although I think in the back of my mind I'm hoping I might put it to use).

From Foyles I let Google Maps lead me to Kings Cross by foot with several of my own diversions through various gardens and squares along the way. While most diversions were merely scenic routes, one which captured my attention enough for a sit-down was the Calthorpe Project, a fantastic community garden (quickly becoming one of my favourite things as well as rose gardens) where I was pleased to find lots and lots of children playing, pretty ceramic benches, a stream complete with little bridges, plants for sale and a compost heap!

Once well-rested, I continued my journey only a short distance (if it weren't for closed pavements and my desire for a cold drink leading me into a café (determined not to find myself in a Starbucks) where the proprieter was more than enamoured by my tasseled dress) to Camley Street Natural Park, which I had discovered after hours from the top of a viewing platform currently located behind Kings Cross St Pancras the day before. As I had missed opening hours the day before, the decision had been made that this was where today's adventure would lead me.

Possibly one of the most surreal places I have visited in London so far, the Natural Park is located in an old coal yard along the Regent's Canal. It has been transformed into a nature reserve where you wander through woodland and around a pond and meadow. While sitting on a bench surrounded by greenery, I could never have imagined that I was in Central London!

Today, I write from Kenwood House, Hampstead, where I have spent the afternoon moving freely between reading Vogue, writing, and napping following a lazy morning at home. This evening I intend to food shop and make something yummy while I watch a film. Gosh I love the summer holiday!

For once I've decided not to ramble on about every single adventure I've had this summer, so here are a few pictures from some of them:

1. When I climbed up The Wellington Memorial
2. A statue in the rose garden in Hyde Park
3. Three statues in the rose garden at Hampton Court
4. Little Venice