It was really lovely weather today and I had a really productive day. After days of studying at home, I finally had to get up with a purpose this morning as I met with my colleagues at the university library to do some course work (we have to analyse the websites of the major banks in Italy and it’s terrifying how badly constructed they are!)
We finished around lunch time and I decided to have a piece of pizza on the go (melanzane e formaggio – sooo good!) as I went for a walk in the sunshine. I first started my usual route: past the Borgo Sant’Angelo and towards Piazza Navona, but then I decided to get lost and chose a street I never walked before, only to discover a whimsical narrow street with cute shops and little workshops.
I had a lovely stroll to Largo Argentina and then onwards to Piramide, where I joined Goirgio and we went to another library together. We got a little studying done, but eventually time for merenda came and as you know, I really do take that seriously! 😉 So I dragged Giorgio out of the library and we agreed to take a “quick coffee” at the first place we’d find – only to stumble over a fancy looking Pasticceria with the most delicious looking sweets in the vitrine. And guess what? They even had Sacher cake! So “quick” got cancelled and we sat down on one of the small marble tables and had a lovely fancy afternoon coffee and cake.
And that’s it. Full of cake and happiness I went home (being super responsible and all, Giorgio went back to study) What a perfect way to end a super sunny, happy and productive day!
Being aware, that it’s probably one of the last days Isa and me will be off together for quite a while (Isa found a job at a restaurant, which basically means no weekends off and I’ll start my proper office-hour job next week), we decided to make the most of the sunny day and went out for a lovely walk in Hampstead Heath park.
Now, I have a bit of a complicated relationship with Hampstead Heath. We went there to see the fireworks at New Years Eve 2013/14 (omg, how time flies!) and I fell in love with the park and the view from Parliament Hill (well, as much as you can in a rainy night surrounded by thousands of people). Anyway, there and then I adopted the resolution to come back and explore the seemingly marvellous park. Well… needless to say that I didn’t. And to make matters worse, for more than half a year, when I was still working at Finchley Road, I passed it every day on my way to work. And it was tempting me and reminding me how easy it’d be to just go there on a day off and that I just couldn’t manage to do so.
But I finally last summer, we did go there; on the hottest day of the year. And I talked Gonzo into going for a swim in one of the muddy ponds! It was a lovely day and we actually managed to go for a walk and enjoy the daylight view from the hill. It was gorgeous and I was so happy that we finally came back!
There, now you know how it took me about a year and a half to do a simple thing as visiting a park. And that’s how Hampstead Heath became somehow a reminder for me: how in London it sometimes can be hard to keep plans and how little it effort it would actually take.
Anyway, Isa and me took the tube to Finchley Road and from there walked through posh Hampstead Village to the park. It’s a really beautiful area, but you can basically smell the money as you walk through; big old houses, CCTV cameras on the fences and expensive-looking cars (not that I really have an idea) in the streets.
The park itself is, as described in length above, is absolutely lovely and we truly enjoyed the walk. But even though it was a sunny day, it was very windy and we both got cold and hungry, so we decided to have an emergency-merienda. We had a not-too bad cup of tea and sad defrosted slice of cake in the uncharitable park cafe. But it did the trick and we went on to the top of the hill and around the pond. Eventually we rewarded ourselves with some very nice carrot cake at the bakery across the street.
And all is well, that ends well.
Or: if the cake is good, the day is good! 🙂