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News Day 5: My Favourite Street in London

23rd January


Slightly late, but my ongoing ‘issues’ with BT (broadband is so slow and rubbish it keeps packing up so I can’t email / post stuff, thanks BT) means I’m a bit behind. That and I’m very lazy, which doesn’t help.

Thanks for all the lovely things you’ve said about Love Always which has been out for 3 days now, WOO to the HOO. As I’ve said already, I think on Monday, it was a very hard book to write and I’m frankly amazed I finished it and didn’t chuck it in to fulfill my dream of selling my body / possessions to buy karaoke sessions at Lucky Voice. It has different aspects to it which I loved researching however, the jewellery, the 60s, Cornwall, and finally East London, which I didn’t know that well beforehand. Weirdly we have now moved to Angel and it’s about a 30 minute walk from where Natasha Kapoor, the heroine, lives just off Brick Lane. On Monday I wrote about Lahore Kebab House and round the Commercial Road, but today I’m writing about Columbia Road, to the north of Brick Lane. It’s one of my favourite streets in London.

I hope you like the new website design. Unfortunately I can’t work out how to get the proportions of the photos right with this spiffy new layout, so that’s why everything looks bonkers. BONKERS! I’ll sort it out, bear with, bear with (C) Greatest Sitcom Ever.

The cover of Love Always has a gorgeous illustration of Natasha walking down a street which could be Columbia Road, holding a large bunch of beautiful flowers.

For those of you who don’t know, Columbia Road is a longish road but one short section of it, every Sunday, has a flower market, which is famous in London.

The earlier you get there, the better; it

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starts at 8am and by 12pm it’s still going strong, but a lot of the good stuff will have gone. However if you’re looking for some bargains they sell off a lot of the flowers then: I picked up three bunches of narcissi there last week for £2. They only lasted 5 days but they were a lovely 5 days…!

Last time I was there I went into the lovely Elphicks also picked up this completely great porcelain chicken – she holds your string and scissors and you hang her on the wall! My friend Soph thinks it’s the biggest waste of money ever but I love it. What do you think??!
And then to Milagros, my favourite shop at the moment. Milagros is Mexican and sells exquisite tiles that they sell mail-order and other gorgeous things. I bought a guardian angel for Angel: I love her. She has a nice expression and I love the fact she’s playing a heavenly clarinet, like something out of the Buena Vista Social Club.

Then we walked to the Geffrye museum, on the Kingsland Road, about 5 minutes away. It’s a museum of furniture, textiles, household objects and designs shown in rooms of houses from 1600 to the present day. It’s wonderful and not too big, so interesting to actually walk through a room and think you might understand how people lived in Samuel Pepys’ time, or the Victorian era.

Then we had a Vietnamese at Loong Kee (134 Kingsland Road, best Vietnamese even round there, thanks Maura) and rolled home with the chicken and the angel. Good day!

Hope you’ve enjoyed these, thanks for reading. Let me know if you have any recommendations round there and I’ll post them up.

Lots of love

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