Sweet Tooth In London

It is a Famous Fact, that I love cake. As someone who doesn’t drink alcohol, having cake is the main means through which I socialise with people. It is like going to the pub, only way more chocolatey. I also have the palette of a five-year-old. How much icing is the correct amount? All the icing. Just… all of it. With this in mind, as a public service, here is some of my personal general cakey highlights in London…. Disclaimer – I do not actively seek out taste experiences like a true conoisseur. For all of my cakey love, I’ve…

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Running London

I am learning to run longer distances. Oh god it sucks. But sometimes it doesn’t! And sometimes it especially doesn’t because London has some great running routes if you know where to look…. (Most of these will be north London, as that’s where I primarily run.) The river. The Thames Path can carry you practically from Oxford to the sea, but for a more London-tastic run it’ll do you sterling service in the city too. On the north bank I’ve covered Strawberry Hill-Richmond, beneath huge hanging trees and along wide gravel tracks. Back from the road are large estates of…

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Running Sucks Sorta Maybe No

Running sucks. I’m kinda learning to love it. As a child, I was taught that exercise was basically a moral sin. For my Dad, who was always overweight, exercise was just something he straight-up refused to do. My Mum loves walking everywhere and values exercise in life deeply, but always had a strong sense that to ‘do exercise’ such as the gym was to indulge in unforgivable vanity and self-importance. That, and she hated the swimming pool changing rooms. Consequently, I was raised suspicious of basically all activity that wasn’t walking casually ever. At secondary school, my PE report was…

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Some Days In The City

‘Tis the season of grass pollen and brown fluff, and all across London people are snuffling, coughing and choking their way through a gently, if variably beautiful summer. Growth is everywhere.  Trees that five weeks ago were stubby twigs with tiny buds are now dangling over the pavement, forcing people to duck beneath them as they scurry around.  Along the canal, the walkway has halved in width in some places as wild blueberry bushes and giant budlias have suddenly spurted forward, growing just fast enough to remind you that urban civilization is indeed a tender thing, and will fall within…

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6 Inches of London Snow

Day 0. The weather report says snow is coming.  Some of us still remember when this was a regular thing, but that was 20 years ago.  Transport for London starts issuing warnings.  Not “don’t travel” just, “expect disruption” because they know from bitter experience that it’s not enough to say “there might be snow”.  If you want to avoid the irate emails, the snarky tweets, the furious interviews from shuttered platforms with local news, you gotta say “it’s gonna go wrong”.  Somehow that makes everything already better. It’s the same with the ad campaign on the underground.  “You plan for…

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