As readers of my blog will know..I am currently obsessed with London. It is so ALIVE right now and the sun is joyfully playing ball. I think there must be something in the water as now TWO of my friends, who previously shunned the capital like the plague, have turned around and said..as easy as they'd been coming up there with me for years..'yes, lets have a day out in London! Yay! Just goes to show...you've gotta give people room to change (though in a more speedier manner would be helpful!).
There was a VINTAGE festival on at the South Bank Centre, which overlooks the Thames. Reams of loral retro dresses and spike vintage heels clicking around the place. The girls looked so gorgeous and the men all sharp, www.brylcreemed.com and fine, wearing winkle-pickers so pointed I'm surprised Health & Safety have not clapped a ban on them as 'unsafe sharp objects'. I have no idea why (didn't want to get caught) but I've no pictures of any of them in their finery. Not even the girl in the black basque and satin pencil skirt with an incredibly small waist..couldn't have been more than 20', seriously...she obviously hadn't just eaten a huge meal like I had and now was having to carry around like a growing foetus in my belly. I looked marsupial! Not a good look...for a very celibate and unpregnant girl.
What had filled me up? An off the charts Indian restuarant steps away from Covent Garden. Before catching the train, I had done my usual (and far too involved) planning for the outing. Where to meet, what time, where to go, what to see and VERY importantly...where to dine. I had mapped the whole day around the food stops (oh dear, is that sad?..hmm, but true). An optomistic planner, I usually have to cross off at least three items from my list. Of course I allow it all to go to pot when reality kicks in. It seems my mind does things a lot quicker than actuality. We did get to go to one place I wanted and I stumbled across a new street van I want to check out in the future..but whilst dragging my friend around, filling up his head with all my excitement and chatter, I spotted Sagar..three blocks from all the doings at Covent Garden. Upon entry I was greeted with a friendly smile and a VEGAN MENU. Sagar is a South Indian, vegetarian joint, and they have a whole menu just for vegans. Nice. My friend and I (he had no choice really but to give in to me) ditched our (my) plans and took a table by the window so we could people watch. After agonising between the marsala dosa and the pizza (Indian pizza? i know, this is London..this is fusion..this is progress). I chose the pizza, (Uthapam) out of curiosity (my, this girl is a reckless risk taker!).
The pizza came, along with my friends dosa and idli (steamed rice sponge) (not vegan...how selfish of him..or wise as I would have nabbed half!). The 'pizza' was a rice and lentil flour base (on my list to recreate) topped with delicious potatoes, onions & coriander (ciltrano) with gun powder chili. Amazing flavours. The sambal and coconut chutneys were..in a word..PERFECT. My friend allowed me to nick a very small (God! I told him it was for research purposes!) tearing of his dosa and man oh man, it was good, with a whiff of heat. I was stuffed. No room for (or energy after my marathon sightseeing programme) to go hunt down a cupcake or slice of something sweet. Sagar are excellent and the service and attention exceptional. The 2 entrees, 1 starter and a round of poppadoms under £19, right by the West End..this is incredible. If you know better..hey, tell me. At time of writing their www.gosagar.com was undergoing a rejig.
Other than eating we also went to the Glamour of the Gods photography exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery which has excellent portraits of Hollywood legends from the 1920's to the 1960. I swooned unashamedly at a shot of Clark Gabel...'oh Ashley', embracing some wilting starlet. I took a chance of a second viewing (I'd been week before) of the BP portrait awards..incredible talent..honestly, I'd love to watch one of the artists at work. Our outing also spotted a rave on the beach (thank God for low tide). London was dancing in the sun. Now you don't get to read THAT very often.
|street car I desired!|
|a retro roving cinema...there is a projector in the bulbous glass front deck|
|raving on the banks of the Thames river|