23 Mar 2016

Brunch at Duck & Waffle and Exploring the Sky Garden, London

Duck & Waffle

When you have to book brunch in advance, the fact that the only table you can get is at 9:30am on a Saturday doesn't really phase you. It's too far away for you to think about it.

But then the Saturday arrives and you've had a hard (well...) working week and you have to leave the house at 8:30am cos travel in London and it's snowing IN MARCH. 


But you can't be 'nah' about Duck & Waffle. It's probably illegal. And that would be because it really is too cool for school... don't let me say that again.

Duck & Waffle, if you haven't picked up on the trend yet, is a pretty incredible restaurant located on the top floor of a forty-floor skyscraper in London. You have to book forever in advance and going up in the super-fast lift gives you vertigo but that really is the only downside; go get yo ass up there. 

Duck & Waffle

For starters, it goes without saying really, the view is incredible whichever way you look, although I particularly enjoyed being sat on the side of the gherkin basically cos you're looking DOWN on it and that makes you feel like you are somewhere important. What a cute little baby skyscraper you. 

Duck & Waffle

Duck & Waffle

The actual restaurant is pretty simple décor-wise; but with those floor-to-ceiling windows, it doesn't need to be anything more. The bar area though, has so much to gaze at. LOOK AT THAT FLOOR. And those bottles on the ceiling, and those sparkles hanging there, and that wall and I just used up all my iPhone memory taking photos. My bad. 

Duck & Waffle

Duck & Waffle

Duck & Waffle

Duck & Waffle

Duck & Waffle

However, the main event is obviously the food (isn't it always?). We started (yes started) with a full English for G and poached eggs on sourdough toast for moi. This was the start of the waiter judging me. He raised an eyebrow when I ordered and said 'is that all?'

Well excuse me for being modest with my breakfast.

Hands down, best poached eggs I've ever had. They literally bounced they were so fresh and the yolk was so, well, orange. But you know, like, orangeorange.

Duck & Waffle

Duck & Waffle

Duck & Waffle

Duck & Waffle

After I'd wolfed down my bouncy eggs (stop it), the waiter asked if we would like anything else.


Yes I would.

You see, I lied when I said I was being modest with my food.

This was the main event. I'd heard the stories, I'd prepared myself...

'I'll have the Full Elvis waffle please.'

Cue more serious eyebrow raising from the waiter. G orders the English cherries waffle, somewhat more sensibly.

A minute later, the waiter comes back to check that I'm aware that the Full Elvis is a full-sized waffle and then hastily assures me that I've made the best choice when I give him my 'yes, and...?' look. Defs judging me a lil bit.

But, seriously, I really did make the best choice. I mean, LOOK AT IT.

Duck & Waffle

Admittedly, G got flowers on his which I didn't but that was only cos I had EVERYTHING else. Peanut butter, jam, caramelized bananas, blueberries, raspberries,blackberries, strawberries, nuts, chantilly cream, chocolate... Oh my god was it good.

Duck & Waffle

Those berries; they were huge! And so fresh!

Hashtag food porn.

Duck & Waffle

Duck & Waffle

Quite frankly, if the waffle doesn't make you want to go to Duck & Waffle, then I don't know what will. Jokes aside; the service we received was spot on and the waiter was very willing to chat with us about the food and answer our questions about the restaurant.

Slightly bizarrely, it's open 24/7 so naturally I'm going to have to go back at 4am and be the most pretentious drunk person in the history of forever. Cheesy chips? No, darling, let's pop into that lovely restaurant at the top of a skyscraper and grab some chantilly cream.

Duck & Waffle

Duck & Waffle

After we'd paid the bill (which wasn't cheap but you're treating yourself), we had a bit of a mooch around the local area where G wandered and I took photos. It was eerily quiet for London but that was probably a good thing because we spent most of the time looking up because oh my so much cool architecture. 

Duck & Waffle

Duck & Waffle

Duck & Waffle

Duck & Waffle

After a minor tantrum on my part because we passed two Waterstones and they were both CLOSED and having a little freak out because we got an email from the landlord saying we had the flat we wanted (*victory dance*), we popped over to 20 Fenchurch street, AKA the Walkie Talkie to continue our tour of skyscrapers with a trip to the Sky Garden.

This is another one you need to book in advance but tickets are free so you definitely need to be adding it to your to-do-in-London list.

After faffing your way through security, you whizz up in another lift Charlie-and-the-chocolate-factory-style (where your ears pop big time) and emerge in what feels like an enormous green house. Only there's a cafe and views of the Shard.

Duck & Waffle

Duck & Waffle

You can mooch around as you please; check out the plants and views, chill in the cafe (obviously, I had a waffle food coma so didn't go anywhere near the food... but it looked good so I'll still recommend it...) and there's a balcony for you to go and stare at the view at your heart's content.

Duck & Waffle

Duck & Waffle

Duck & Waffle

Whilst I realise this photo is kinda dark, I'm scared to edit it in case it reveals I was walking around with bits of peanut butter all over my face... which I probably was. 

Duck & Waffle

Eventually there will come a point you feel skyscrapered out, and this is where you can go home and collapse on the sofa for the rest of the day, all the while contemplating how you can recreate that waffle for breakfast on Sunday. 

11 Mar 2016

Why I’m bored with pretending to be a twenty-something commitment phobe who is afraid of getting old

Why I’m bored with pretending to be a twenty-something commitment phobe who is afraid of getting old

The title of this post doesn't really imply that any kind of thought and structure has gone into this blog post. And it hasn't. Soz.

I just ate a whole bag of magic stars (one of the big ones cos the small bags only give you about five i.e. one mouthful and that is not enough magical chocolate stars in a girl’s life) and fancied a bit of a ramble about some of the feels I've been having in recent months. And then I’m gonna post it online because that is kinda the point of having a blog.

Don’t know whether any of you have experienced this, but in the past couple of years I've noticed that there’s a definite split down my facebook timeline (urgh facebook; why do you somehow manage to persuade us to keep coming back and look at your boringness? Clue: cat videos) of people who either went down the student/graduate/job/live-in-some-city-somewhere route or those who decided to go down the straight into work after school, get married and have kids route.
Now we all know it is nowhere near as flippin simple as that but I’m going to generalise here because I’m basically chatting shit to myself and you all get my drift anyhoo. Either route is fine, many times they overlap and there are several other routes anyway. But let’s say there aren’t and it was really that black and white.  I would have to put myself in the first category and there’s definitely been a bit of a push as to how I’m supposed to feel about the other route. 

Once upon a time, not that long ago really when you think about it, it was considered socially unacceptable for a woman to still be single or un-married by her mid-twenties. We have all read Jane Austen (haven’t we? Isn't Jane Austen a right of passage us gals have to go through? No? Who da fuq are you?!), drooled over Colin Firth (yeah that’s the TV show but don’t pretend you don’t imagine Mr Darcy as Colin Firth when you’re reading the book. In the wet shirt.) and laughed at the idea of Mrs Bennet stressing over her daughters not being married (the youngest is 15 but whatever).

But these days, getting married or having children young; you’re basically a cretin. We all have to (apparently) physically baulk at the idea of having kids now as though it’s basically a disgusting concept (despite the fact that, in our twenties, our ovaries are at prime LET’S MAKE BABIES time). Long term relationships, marriage and, heaven forbid, babies are all something we should absolutely not be focusing on. Nuh uh. It’s all about flirting, casual flings, growing that career, wiiiiiiine and fun. Because you’re only young once and we’re all installed with this fear of getting older and becoming ‘boring’. Because old people can’t have fun. Obvs.

The older I’ve got (and I do concede that at the age of 24, I’m hardly pushing death’s door), the more confident I have become in myself. I’m happy with who I am, I have the confidence and independence to wear my style of clothes and proudly shout about my interests (I CAN RECITE THE PROLOGUE TO ROMEO&JULIET OFF BY HEART BITCHESSS) without feeling the need to say ‘nerd’ afterwards. I’m only friends with people I genuinely love, I say no to things I don’t actually enjoy (yay to no longer pretending I enjoy theme parks or drinking Sambuca *voms at memories*) and I no longer give a shit if people think I’m weird (yeah, and what of it?). All those teenage-like insecurities are out the window and man it feels good. I have more fun (way more fun), am happier and more content now than I ever was when I was a teenager. 

Getting older did that.

Remind me why we don’t want to do it again?

Last month, my boyfriend and I hit the one year mark. I am officially in a long term relationship. Oh and we’re planning on moving in together. Oh my gaaaaawd.

The thing that stresses me out the most about the situation? Moving out means I’m going to have to clear out the bedroom I’ve had since I was 15 and the thought of what might be hiding at the back of my wardrobe after 9 years gives me chills. There will be a day soon where I will have to tool up, dive in and fight through the nest of spiders, my alarmingly pink prom dress, shoes I am no longer capable of wearing, and probably the white witch of Narnia in order to leave the place clean (jeez mum, you’re SO unreasonable). 

But the whole living with a boy, taking a big step in our relationship and basically saying I like you enough to see you everyday thing? I’m chilled. I’m happy. I’m cushion shopping.

Relationship perceptions:

Being single is fun and free. But you’re also a sad singleton who hasn’t had sex in TWENTY FIVE YEARS. 

Finding someone is the goal. But it makes you boring and ahhh I am too young to settle down. HOW CAN YOU EVEN BE THINKING ABOUT MARRIAGE? YOU’RE TOO YOUNG YOU IMBECILE.

The goal seems to be to have another half. But not to be 100% committed to said other half. Great to have a boyfriend and be in a loving, trustful relationship and omg you guys are SO CUTE (*does little sick in mouth*) but when it comes to moving it on to the next step... people seem to freak out. It’s like people want the first year of a relationship and then don’t want it to move any further. I sense that it’s not the committed relationship as such, more that said committed relationship may lead to marriage and babies and people are soooooo not ready for that.

And they tell you about it.

A lot.

I get it; it scares you. It’s scared us all at some point or other. Because, well, change freaks everyone out once in a while.

But, let’s face it, your twenties ARE scary.

But I’m really getting bored of pretending it’s all something I don’t want. Okay, there’s the shit bits. Like the housing crisis is fucking us all over so we’ll probs have to live with the rents forever and they told us we had to do GCSEs and A levels and go to uni and then we came out and it was all like ‘lol you don’t have any experience, wanna do this internship FOR FREE’ and then you did the internship and it was like ‘lol she only has an internship, give her the job but pay her £3 an hour, she can totally live off that in central London’ and you have to pay tax and have a savings account and you don’t know who you are and what the hell you’re doing with your life and urgh.

It’s all pretty darn stressful.  And scary. Did I mention scary?

But, you know that philosophy people have; do something that scares you every day? Well, that’s for this situation.

It’s scary. But, hell, it’s also REALLY FREAKIN EXCITING.

Every day, every single bloody day, I worry about all the things listed above but I also get so excited about all the incredible possibilities out there. My brain feels like it’s throwing out ideas at 150mph. I have so many things I want to try, so many amazing memories to learn from and so many ways to shape myself into the person I want to be.

And here’s a controversial revelation: one day, I DO want a baby and all of those things that come with it.

At some point.


Yeah, it alarms me. Someone entrusting me with someone else’s life? Um, what now? Sometimes I struggle to dress myself, let alone another mini human. And I have been a bitch to my mum in the past, what if my cute little baby does the same to me when they’re a teenager? Kinda like your cat suddenly getting a bit older and deciding it hates you now. LOVE ME YOU FLUFFY FOOL.

I am not emotionally equipped for this.

But, you know, I don’t want a baby or marriage or mortgage or any of that malarkey right this second. And I assume when it does happen, it’ll be because I am ready and that won’t be some big YEAH LET’S DO THIS moment;it’ll just naturally happen. And, guys, THAT’S OKAY. It’s okay to not be ready for any of that stuff just yet. But you don’t need to go on about it every five minutes, be cruel to someone who likes you because you’re having a freak out or be a bitch to your best friend because she seems weirdly chilled about the situation.

Stop putting your energy into claiming you’re omg so old (no you’re not. You’re 24. Older than you were yesterday, still younger than your granny) and judging those gals you went to school with who have two kids already and immediately having to claim that your friend is ‘so grown up’ just because she’s done something that you’re not quite ready for.

Stop stressing. Put your energy into enjoying every single aspect of life instead.

It’s okay to be ready right now. And it’s okay to not be. Enjoy life now and enjoy those “adult” things when they come around; whether that’s tomorrow or in ten years time. Enjoy it all because it’s ALL exciting. Everything will naturally come around in their own damn sweet time, and that’s fine by me.

And that’s where this little ramble ends. I haven’t bothered to edit this post because one of the great things about blogging is you can just throw down a load of random thoughts and hope that maybe they might be coherent enough for someone else to be like omg totally feel ya sista. But if not, I got the thoughts out. Which is the whole point for me.

Plus, haven’t got time to edit. Out of magic stars and getting withdrawal symptoms.

*runs to shops in pjs with unbrushed hair*

Kay, bye.

6 Mar 2016

London Eats | Hummus Bros

Hummus Bros

I’m at work and perusing blogs/articles on food. This ain’t what I’m actually paid to do (I wish) but it was a scheduled five minute break. That I’d scheduled myself. Cos breaks important.

Then suddenly I’m reading something about a food place called Hummus Bros and I’m all like did someone say HOUMOUS? (erm, what’s the actual spelling of hummus…humous… houmous...that chickpea dip? Does anyone know?!) I was so in the mood for houmous (apparently that's the spelling we're going for). I hit up google maps and found one a 15 minute walk from the office. BAM.   

Bye bitches, off to get houmous.

Hummus Bros

Cept I didn’t actually say that cos no one sits near me at work #loser. Anyway, I marched straight there. Well no, I totally got distracted by Waterstones because, ya know, BOOKS and I laughed at the mother’s day section cos I was picturing my mum’s face if I bought her a colouring book and I also bought my cousin a ‘congrats on your wedding’ card cos she got married and this was exciiiiiiting… what was I saying?

Hummus Bros

Oh yes, so I marched/meandered through the busy London streets, enjoying the sunshine and the general hustle & bustle of all these people/pigeons going about their lives and debating whether I should even bother going back to work and just have a day out with myself, and eveeeeentually ended up at Hummus Bros ready for some of the chickpea magic.

Hummus Bros

If I'd had more time, I'd have stayed and eaten there because I really enjoyed the simplistic, chilled vibe the place has going on. Sadly, though, I am not paid to sit in cool London cafes and indulge on houmous bowls so I went for the take out option.

Hummus Bros

Yes, you did hear the words 'houmous' and 'bowl' there. Basically, houmous is used as a base for everything and then you can choose toppings; I went for the chicken and falafel salad and guys, it was dreamy.

Hummus Bros

The houmous was so tasty and creamy, the chicken was sautéed in a tomato sauce and the falafel balls were so bright and fresh, served up with tomato and coriander salsa and tzatziki. And you get a pitta bread which, just FYI, was the best pitta I've ever had. It was how pitta is meant to be rather than the thin, pathetic things you get in shops. It was soooo thick and warm and oh hi there little pitta pillow.

Hummus Bros

I went for a small portion which I'd recommend, because, well, it's not small and I was so full afterwards. There was so much food but it was all so tasty and DAMN I cannot stop eating and now I'm just a houmous monster sat at a desk.

Hummus Bros

But this is all good because a small portion was £5.65 as it was and I am so not down with breaking the bank over lunch only to be presented with one puréed chickpea and a pitta crumb (we've all been to those kinda places).

Hummus Bros

Hummus Bros

More on Hummus Bros here and their menu is here. Go turn yourself into a houmous monster too; I ain't judging.

1 Mar 2016

Little Gems: 19

Little Gems
Love padlock things down at Liverpool docks. 

1) Life is so busy right now, I may have to stop going to work just to get everything done. We all have to make sacrifices I suppose.

2) CLARE-BEAR got married! Clare-Bear is my cousin by the way; I still haven't got out of that irritating habit of calling her by her childhood nickname. Our whole family descended on Liverpool this weekend, which is suuuuuch a great city, and it was pretty emotional to watch my gal get hitched.

3) Still grieving over the end of our holiday in Tenerife. Sobs.

4) Speaking of grief; WHY IS EVERYONE DYING?! Genuinely so sad about Louise Rennison leaving us; that woman's quotes shaped my friendship with the girls. Also, have I come to terms with Alan Rickman yet? Have I heck. #turntopage394

5) How much desk-envy to I have over Hannah Gale's desk? Clue: A LOT.

6) 50 best beaches in the world; just some torture for you whilst you're sat at your desk and the rain lashes against the window.

7) Wait, March?! When the heck did you show up?!

8) Taza has made me want to go to Australia big time. 

10) It's getting lighter! Have you noticed? Spring is basically, pretty much, almost here.