Monday in London

On Monday morning I allowed everyone to get up a little later than usual. We were going to The Breakfast Club in Soho for pancakes, and I decided we would avoid rush hour, and get there mid morning, a perfect time for brunch, when there would be no queues.

Ha!

Clearly word has gotten out, and people were queueing out the door and round the corner even when we got there at ten o’clock. 

The next nearest branch I could find was in Camden Passage, which is, of course, in Islington. We grabbed a cab and hot footed it over there. Things were much more satisfactory and we had a five minute wait before being seated and promptly served with stacks of pancakes as high as an elephant’s eye. The only one of us to finish theirs was Tilly, who had three, mattress sized pancakes, topped with crispy bacon and maple syrup, and then some vanilla whipped cream she pinched from Jason’s plate.

A growing girl.

I know it’s a super popular fashionable place, and very gimmicky. But goodness I love it there.

Jason had to take a work call, so the children and I indulged in a little vintage shopping in Camden Passage, which is full of strange little boutiques and antique knick knackery. We found a lovely place called Fat Faced Cat, where I bought an apple green linen trapeze dress, and we chatted to the very friendly owner for about half an hour. She had some gorgeous, gorgeous things, including a Pucci maxi dress which I fell madly in love with but which was way beyond my budget.

There was a wonderful wool shop called Loop, which we desperately wanted to explore, but sadly it is shut on Mondays. I say sadly. I think Jason cheered.

When he’d finished his call, we headed back into the city and went to the Churchill War Rooms and Museum in Whitehall. It costs about £13 per adult to visit, but children under fifteen are free, and you absolutely get your money’s worth. The place is fascinating, really well curated and there is loads to see and do. We spent well over an hour in there, and with three, sugar fuelled children, that is pretty impressive going.

Our next stop was a brief foray to Forbidden Planet on Shaftesbury Avenue. There are other branches, but this is the mecca for all things geek related, and Jason and the children had so much fun oohing and ahhing over all the merchandise, books, t-shirts and tat they could buy I thought they might lose their voices.

From there we met up with our friends Gavin and Yvonne and went for lunch at Ciao Bella on Lamb’s Conduit street, which is becoming one of our firm favourites for London eating. Impeccable food, great staff and they also, we found, serve gluten free pasta, which was excellent for our friend Yvonne, who had thought we might be trying to poison her.

The lunch was long and leisurely so I was able to nip up the road to Persephone Books to treat myself to my yearly purchase from them, and the children headed to Coram Fields for a brief gallop around between rain storms.

Waving goodbye to Gavin and Yvonne we headed back to the house for a brief pitstop while Jason gathered up his things, and we escorted him to St. Pancras before waving him off. We were feeling very disconsolate at his departure, but managed to slightly cheer ourselves up with a trip to Shake Shack in Covent Garden for amazingly rich, and amazingly expensive (a fiver a throw), milk shakes, which we slurped as we wandered round Soho in the dark, watching the night life unfurl before we went home.

 

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