This afternoon I went to The Wosley one of my favourite restaurants in London. I love the huge grand dining room with its gothic cathedral style chandleirs. The thing I hate about this and all restaurants actually is the food. I never really want to eat anything from the menu except maybe a couple of the deserts. Today I ordered and ice cream sundae and left most of it because I dont really like ice cream. I was in Scotts last week and ended up eating chip butties for my main course. I find mid range cafes easier to negotiate.
Here are a few of my favourite places and foods.
Boorak Goldborne Road, Mezze Plate of humous, babaganoush and tabbulei
Ranoush Juice Edgeware Rd (as above)
Carluccios, Gardineria Pasta with deep fried spinach balls
Pain Quotidien, cheese board, red fruit crumble, maybe tuna salad but mostly I dont eat fish
Snog Classic plain frozen yogurt
Laduree L'Ipisan cake and all macaroons except licorice & mint flavour
Patisserie Valerie Mille Fuille
Maison Berteaux (as above)
Tonights full moon is called the Thunder Moon, I will lie in bed with the blinds open and leave a glass of water on the window sill to absorb the energy so the pigeons who come for breakfast and I can drink it in the morning, hopefully I will get there first.
Saw Gainbourg yesterday at The Electric Cinema in Notting Hill. I loved the movie, I love the music and I adore Serge ( I have always had a passion for promiscuous alcoholics). I am reminded of a story my friend told me about meeting Jane Birkin (overratted in my opinion - like some 1960's Patsty Kensit type ) anyway she was at some perfume launch where Jane having got to an age where having more children with wealthy men was out of the question had decided to collude with Miller Harris to 'create' a cats piss cologne. So my friend spots Jane and runs over really excited and then kind of freezes at her feet since she is not sure what to say. ' I love Serge' is what came out of her mouth and Jane looked at her like she was fucking nuts (she is) and said 'So did I' and walked away.
All chances pass me like dream,
I neither sing nor pray;
and thou art like the poisonous tree
that stole my life away.
Love & Hate , Elizabeth Siddal
I saw Lizzie’s grave at Highgate Cemetery at the weekend. She is often referred to as the first supermodel as she was the muse and model to the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood painters and later the wife of painter and poet Dante Rossetti. Dante apparently drove her half crazy with his philandering ways and having been addicted to Laudanum for a number of years she finally took an overdose and died 1862. Dante was so full of grief (GUILT) that he buried a new manuscript of his poetry in the coffin of his lost love. Unfortunately they didn’t have photocopiers in the 1860’s and 6 years later when he hit a creative dry spell he appealed to the home office for permission to dig them back up. One moon lit night (like tonight) his lawyer and a team of workmen went to Highgate and by the light of a fire they exhumed Elizabeth and retrieved the book of poems while Dante stayed on terra firma a few miles south of the scene. His officer told him that when they opened the coffin they saw that Lizzie was as beautiful in death as in life and that her famous auburn hair had grown to fill the coffin.
I used to live in a big house in a leafy suburb of Manchester, the address was Number 4 Chatsworth Road, Ellesmere Park. The house had seven bedrooms and I lived there with my adoptive parents, a rabbit and an Alsatian dog. My mother rented the upstairs rooms to medical and musical students, we had a piano in the dining room and some of the junior Dr’s had skeletons in their cupboards, however not quite as many as my father .
One day after a holiday we all drove home in his Vauxhall Viva (bench front seat) and he told us that he had sold the house, that he had been having an affair, and was leaving my mother and taking everything except me. I don’t remember what he said to her I just remember thinking that we were going to get out of the car and we didn't. I never again saw my room, nor my animals, my toys, my garden, school or friends.
Sometimes I think I made this story up, that there never was any big house, parents and pets. I checked on googlemaps and the house is there, it existed then and it still does.
I am just loving having Spotify on my computer at the moment. Years ago I sold my record collection to buy finance and bad idea and I just never got around to replacing it. Now I can put together a play list of all my favourite tunes.
What I love about summer is how big and blue and high the sky is. In winter (the other nine months of the year) the sky always looks so close and heavy and gray like a rotten unwashed duvet laying over England.
So far this month I have provided assistance for three baby birds. The first one was a tiny Bluetit, I kept long enough to call Edward, I found him in Covent Garden on Monmouth Street alone outside a hotel, I took him home, created a small apartment for him out of a shoe box and fed him soaked meal worms that I purchased from the hardware shop on St Martins Lane. Eventually I took him to the Blue Cross animal hospital who transfered him to a bird sanctuary a few days later. Later that week I found another older Bluetit baby under a tree with his mother frantically flapping away in the branches. I picked him up since he appeared not to be able to fly back into his nest unaided. A tall man was passing by and he pulled down a branch which I lifted the bird back on to. Gentley (as to avoid any black comedy error) he let the branch back up into the tree and we left the bird mummy to take it from there. This morning I found a baby Blackbird sitting on my step, I have seen him before as he lives in a hedgerow in the recess between my building and the offices behind. I would evaluate his flying skills as poor - intermediate so I left him alone as he bobbed down the steps. I kept looking out of the window, he was sitting alone in a corner, his mummy came to see him but was unable to coax him back into the nest. After an hour I picked him up and popped him back into the hedgerow that his mother disappears into, I gave him a fruit'n'suet ball to be getting on with he seemed happy enough when I left. It's a tricky thing finding baby animals since if you look on websites they always tell you to leave them alone and the last thing I would want to do is harm them but I find it impossible not to help if I think the alternative is that they get trodden on or die alone and frightened.
I spent yesterday afternoon eating sweet little black cherries picked from trees in Tower Hamlets Cemetery. More than half a million people lie in the over grown 36 acre grounds, many in mass graves reflecting the poverty of the area. Lots of stories of sailors and rope makers, much of the grandeur is lost to bad decisions made by various London councils. The lady who showed us around was lovely though she told us how Tower Hamlets council had decided to level the cemetery and make it into a park until locals protested. The chapel where services were once held has been demolished leaving no access to the catacombs below. Many who lay here were lost to Britain’s two world wars, victims of The Blitz and the Bethnal Green tube disaster, soldiers and sailors who fell abroad were brought back to rest in the East End where their lives had begun. The sense of East End pride was clear in the ladies patriotism – she laughed as she discussed recent proposal to reopen the ground for use by local Muslims, apparently to avoid the problem of being buried on top of another body which is against religious tradition the councillor were suggesting squeezing new graves in between the old ones. When we came to one part of the cemetery she visibly stiffened and accelerated ‘German’s – we don’t bother about them!’
My ideal job would be ‘novelist’ , I would sit at my computer in a vintage night gown tap tap tapping away while cheques written in all my favourite currencies fluttered on to my door mat every morning. Unfortunately I can’t get it together to write more than a paragraph a month and it’s very hard to negotiate a publishing advance with that kind of output in this kind of economy.