Tuesday, June 4, 2013
I'm alive! Really! I still exist.
This past Friday evening, I disembarked off the plane from London to find myself suddenly thrown back into my normal life in the Bay Area, after nearly two months away of non-stop traveling--first Los Angeles and driving back and forth all over California, followed by two weeks in the UK. That's the funny thing about coming back after traveling so much: the returning is probably more jarring than the going, because you realize how much you (and your home) have changed in such a short time.
While my head is still reeling from the transition back to Real Life, here's a quick interlude of one of my favorite cafés that I encountered while traveling: Lovecrumbs, in Edinburgh, Scotland.
I was barely in Edinburgh for 12 hours before one of the friends I was visiting snapped her fingers and exclaimed, "You have to go to Lovecrumbs while you're here. It is so, so up your alley." And she was right.
Walking into Lovecrumbs was like walking into a perfect marriage of hipsterdom and that wonderful UK tradition of afternoon tea and desserts. In other words, a sort of heaven that warmed my little West Coast, foodie/photographer heart. The desserts on offer were displayed in an old rickety wood cabinet; there were mismatched chairs and vintage plateware; and one eating "bar" in the back was made from an old upright piano with its hammers and guts exposed. Mix this all with the beautiful Scotland northernly light pouring in through the windows, and you can imagine why I was so immediately smitten.
I ordered the Victoria Sponge, which I thought was suitably British, and my friend ordered an apricot flapjack (a different entity from an American flapjack; in Scotland, it's a granola-bar-esque thing). There's just a way that the people in the UK do the simple jam + cake + cream combination that's quite perfect in its understated purity of flavors and especially apropos alongside a hot cup of milky black tea in the afternoon. (The tea came with a personal thermos of hot water for refills! yay!) Every time I come back from the UK, I find myself wishing desperately that we had this same afternoon tea type culture in the US. It makes life so much more civilized!
Despite my groaning about being home, I am looking forward to finally straightening my life back out and not having to live from a suitcase anymore. (Namely, I won't miss the constant confusion over which clothes need laundering and which are safe and sufficiently un-smelly to wear.) Hopefully things will sort themselves out soon, and recipes will magically begin to appear on the blog again. :)