This weekend we did all things London. We definitely covered some ground on the London map, and I loved every minute of it. We have been eying the Boris Bikes right outside of our flat for awhile now and decided Saturday morning was our time to shine. Essentially the concept is you pay £2 for the day and you can take the bikes from any station for thirty minute sessions and return them to any of the stations around London. Driving looks terrifying here with the whole drive on the right side of the road thing but we were up for the challenge on bikes. It may have started out a little rocky due to some event going on in Trafalgar Square preventing us from figuring out how to exit the roundabout but once we figured that out it was almost smooth sailing. A few times I may of had to scream to Ben, “WAIT AM I ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF THE ROAD” and a few times the answer varied from yes to no. Regardless, it got us from point A (home) to point B (Real Food Market).
This place knows how to do markets. Incredible food from vendors and fresh fruits and vegetables and some dang good cheese and bread. Tip: always act like you may buy lunch from each vendor, you get free samples on free samples. I’m talking chocolate, curry, bread, cheese, cider, turkish delight, falafel, and anything your free sampling heart desires.
We went from one market to the next, Borough Market. Yes, I did feel like we along with the rest of the London population and tourists all were at the same place but it was so worth it. It is well worth the dodge through the crowd and the long “queue” in order to make your way to the front of the line. Ben opted for some burger thing with mile high meat and naturally I opted for the fresh fruit smoothie. Typical, typical.
After eating a bit more, we hopped back on our trusty bikes and navigated ourselves over the London Bridge towards the Tower of London to see the poppies. Might I add this trip required no right hand turns which is a blessing. The art installation Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red is a World War I remembrance memorial that encircles the entire tower. It is really quite amazing see all of the ceramic poppies covering the ground, and as more poppies are sold more are added to the ever growing installation.
Then after a long day of market hopping and biking the rain that had threatened all day finally showed up so we headed back to the flat and had the laziest Saturday evening you could imagine. Ben and Jerry’s was involved as well as homemade pumpkin chocolate chip cookies. Oh, and Netflix, because we finally figured out how to watch it from the UK.
On to Sunday. After a lovely morning filled with coffee and church we headed over to the Colombia Flower Market. I mentioned here my plan to make it to this market and today was the day! On the bus towards the market we got a little confused of the direction and decided to hop off. We’ve decided that you win about 1 out of every 4 times when you randomly hop off somewhere. We won. After two steps we walked directly into Shoreditch Food Village which is similar to the concept of food trucks, but half inside, half outside, and envision trendy vintage trucks that I am not sure are mobile. We headed straight to the Freebird Burrito. We love our Mexican. As I said before, it was a win.
Then off to the Flower Market! THIS PLACE IS A DREAM. An entire street dedicated to flower venders on each side. The smell is incredible and the flowers are beautiful. I was too busy swooning to really get any great pictures to show how pretty these flowers were as well as the sheer quantity. Not only that, but off to the side are the greatest vintage shops, unique cafes, music, and art stores. At one point I may have shed a tear I was so happy.
We decided to take this little guy home with us to add to the succulent/cactus theme I’ve got going around here. Also, insiders tip coming at ya! Stay until close and all the venders start lowering their prices. Sneaky, sneaky.To end the day we headed back to the Real Food Market to pick up some fancy bread and cheese, because who doesn’t like fancy bread and cheese?!
London, I love you and your markets. Don’t change.