Friday, July 13, 2007

Locanda Locatelli And The Last Days Of London

Just wanted to put up a few words about the restaurant I'd been dying to go. I'd fallen in love with Giorgio after I first laid eyes on him on the fabulous Tony and Giorgio cooking show. Basically if you're passionate about real Italian cooking then you have me hook line and sinker. And that foppish hair and those eyes...

R got us in for her one and only night in London during our weekend visit, so it was tavolo per cinque, all spruced up. Giorgio greeted us at the reception and I got all shaky and giggly. He looks good. I'm pathetic.

The meal was everything I'd hoped. Good Italian cooking. Unpretentious and reasonably priced. Cute Italian waitstaff. No celebs but what can you do. We saw Jude Law in Paris so that makes up for it.

For my entree I had scoops of goats cheese that was incredibly light and fluffy, drizzled in balsamic reduction and served with baby beetroot and baby onions. My main was orecchiette with crushed peas, guancale and something else. Oh dear I've forgotten. Never mind it was delicious. I was definitely having three courses so dessert was a chocolate and licorice fondant - perfectly runny in the middle - with a scoop of icecream on the side. Two great wines, Chianti and Sangiovese, chosen by the clever wine man himself, Wayne. The girls, bless them, tried to get Giorgio to come out and spend a minute at our table, but he was too busy. It was very sweet of you to try!

We then had some gorgeous martinis at The Purple Bar at the Sanderson. R really is the girl about town. What a fabulous night!


The sun did come out that weekend so it was delightful to stroll around the Thames (less delightful to push and shove our way through Oxford Street trying to get some last minute bargains. Horrible stuff, but managed to pick up a couple of pieces from COS and TopShop). Went to Borough Markets which were brilliant and had wild boar sausage hot dogs, then went to the scallop man (cute in a seafaring way) for three plump scallops served with crunchy bacon on the shell. Had a delicious curry (right around the corner from you, R, have you tried it?). We hopped on the London Eye for beautiful views and caught up with A again for lunch at Leon and some of my happiest buys - including the most perfect trench from Gap! Finally, a trenchcoat!

We had some great last laughs, and then Monday morning it was time to head home...

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

In Numbers:

Weight at departure: 58.0kg
Weight at arrival: 60.8kg
Weight of luggage at departure: 14.4kg
Weight of luggage at arrival: 30kg
Books taken/read: 3/0.5
Pairs of shoes bought: 4
Money spent: Beaucoup

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Almost home.

Is this the same trip that started with Carlo's eyes and handcuffed-scarred 'bracelets'? Kissing and screaming in Madrid. Cold in Amsterdam. Kinship in Dublin. Yes, it has all been this one trip, this one mad, amazing, beautiful trip.

Coming home. The fine line between answering polite 'what was the highlight'-type questions and sharing ridiculous anecdotes. Who can understand the sensation of dancing with others in that magical instant in Privilege or the joy of bathroom sex with a well-known Ibiza DJ?

(It's funny because I already feel closer to home, almost barring that last line so as not to seem crass. But I am crass, and sexual, and crazy, and if anything that is why I travel, to get closer to that real Julia).

But with repetition, and interruptions, the magic of the anecdote seems to be betrayed or pimped out. These moments are my jewels and it is hard to reconcile.

Writing is the happy medium I think. So here I am at Changi, putting a few last thoughts down, although there will be many more updates - Locanda Locatelli; photos. Now it's time to get back on yet another plane, pop a sleeping pill and wake up to a beautiful family.