Date night

Sometimes you just have to have a lazy weekend. We kicked it off with date night on Friday. Now, this sounds terribly romantic but was in fact the result of my friend (name changed for anonymity) Flakey McFlake dropping out on me for girls’ night. Naturally I’d been a good friend and booked a nice restaurant, but I had told T that I had no doubt that Flakey would flake out, so he’d better be on standby to come out to dinner with me. 

Sure enough, I think it was Tuesday when I received an apologetic text message saying that she wasn’t going to be able to make it. Now don’t get me wrong, I love Flakey. We’ve been friends since we were little. But she really is a bit of a flake. I have learned not to take it personally as she does it to everyone. She’s also pretty bad with money so I always assume that I’ll be footing the bill – hence booking a nice but extremely reasonably restaurant for our dinner. (I have a mental bank of these in London for dinners out. I’m not one of those people who loves spending tonnes on one meal.)

It was raining yesterday in London and it was pretty miserable, so it was nice to get out and have a date night. I’ve been to the restaurant before with one of my other girlfriends. It’s really quite fancy looking and I like the high gold ceiling…

 
It feels quite grown up to be going on an actual dinner out. It is just off Piccadilly Circus which is jam packed full of tourists so it felt like a bit of an oasis of calm. Which went with my Friday dress-down trousers which had their first outing yesterday! It was quite funny as I usually just wear black to work. I think I’m getting more adventurous. Or I just like casual things!

  

T and I got a good table and we had a nice time – no doubt helped by the champagne cocktails. I started off with my favourite – gazpacho! It’s been soooo hot in London lately so it was really cool and refreshing. It looks like hot soup in the picture but it was nice and cold! If you’ve never had gazpacho you need to try it. When we go to Spain, I love getting cartons of it from the supermarket. Anyway, cold soup. Yum!


T had some salmon thing which I wouldn’t touch as I hate fish, let alone cold raw / cured fish. For some reason I’ve always hated fish. Considering the amount of processed meat I eat (hello, Dominos pizza) I make a pretty bad aspiring vegan, but I probably would be if I could. I would definitely be vegetarian but I think for the whole purity thing I would rather be vegan. Anyway, I never seem to get there but I can manage vegetarian quite a lot, as I naturally tend to pick the veggie options due to being fussy about many meats. For my main course I went for pasta…

  

It was nice enough but generally I figure main courses are just fillers between starters and desserts. It was all green stuff and peas and beans and rocket (I think you call it something else in the US – just looked it up – arugula). 

Then onto the main event… Dessert!

  

Eton mess. Don’t know if you have this overseas? It’s basically a deconstructed pavlova. Originally with strawberries like this one but they tend to switch it up a bit depending on season. Now, pavlova is my favourite dessert so I was happy. 

You know you’re in a good restaurant when you also get petits fours. We didn’t even have coffee – I had a glass of rosΓ© which was nice. I’ve definitely stopped drinking so much since all the IVF as I just got out of the habit. One glass is fine after the champagne cocktail. (It had brown sugar and something else in but I couldn’t tell what the waiter was saying as he had a very strong French accent! TrΓ¨s bien!) These were chocolate covered marshmallows and brownies. They were very small as petits fours should be. 

  
And done! We had a nice walk back just chatting and spending time together, which is how it should be. It never ceases to amaze me how we don’t get sick of each other! I’m sure I’m very annoying so it’s nice that someone has a tolerance! It definitely worked out well for me even though it wasn’t the original plan. I’m always happy to spend time with T. 

We had an entertaining reminiscence of how many times Flakey has been a bit flakey. She said something about rearranging for next week but I’ll hazard a guess that it won’t happen. I’ll put money on it. (I’ve put a lot of money on it before!) I’m really not bitter even if it sounds like I am! She’s a sweet girl really and pretty much my oldest friend, and she had a rough few years so I think we all just let it go. I also think if you’ve had special treatment your whole life that you never learn to act in certain ways… Like not letting your friends down! 

It’s funny, the first time T met her we ended up with a gigantic bill for hardly any food. She was having a party and everyone had to split the bill despite some of the party having lots to drink and some having nothing, plus several bottles of bubbly she’d ordered. T joked that my night was much cheaper this way! That night went down in folklore in my friend group. I’m one of those people when it comes to money where I think you shouldn’t spend anything or lend anything to someone that you’re not prepared to lose. It always happens with her!

Other than that we’ve had a super lazy Saturday. We both needed a sleep. I have a bad period right now so I’m feeling exhausted. Just lying on the sofa and relaxing although I’m going to tidy my desk shortly. Ooh, the glamour! It’s nice just to chill and play with Dog. I’m always entertained by the idea that Dog doesn’t get certain laws of physics. Like if I bounce a ball for him (we have hard floors) he is mystified how I can drop it and it bounces back up. Or if I pretend to throw something but actually hide it behind my back, he just stares at the ceiling in the direction I “threw” it, waiting for it to come down. Dog is just the best. 

Oh and I forgot to show you a photo of my pizza ring which arrived! It’s so funny. I really love it. I told T if we ever get engaged that I need a ring like this. In fact I’ll just change hands! (We are very committed… Long story but getting divorced is proving to be a slow process.) Anyway… Pizza! πŸ•β€οΈ

  
I also got a great floral headband from the same place. We have a wedding to go to in a month or so and I thought it would be good. I love the roses. 

 
Other than that, I’ve made no commitment this weekend other than to relax and do a bit of tidying. Having my period always makes me feel exhausted. I am losing a lot of blood so it kind of makes me feel bad – so I’m just trying to be easy on myself this weekend. I’m happy to be hanging out with T and Dog…

Here’s to lazy weekends. Hope you’re having a good one! 
 

Advertisements

35 comments

    • Nara

      Criterion which is literally off Piccadilly Circus. I really recommend it. Nice food and sooo cheap! (For London!) They do a set menu which is Β£20 for two courses or Β£25 for three. Of course you have to have three! 😜 Plus the set menu changes as it’s not the same as last time I went, maybe a month ago. It’s fun to go to a fancy looking place – without the Michelin price tag!

      If you eat out a lot, you’ll have to give me your recommendations! My other recent rec is L’Autre Pied in Marylebone. It was fab, with really great service.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Babyscienceproject

        Ah yes, I know it! Haven’t been there but will give it a go. My fave place is Quo Vadis on Dean St in Soho – excellent all day all theatre menu for Β£17. Really nice, check it out. I also like Brasserie Zedel near Piccadilly. We’re lucky to live in a city with so many awesome restaurants, fact.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Nara

        You should definitely try it. I think it’s really good value and nice for a change from Pizza Express etc! Will have to give those two a go. I tend to avoid the west a lot of the time as it’s so crowded. Getting old! πŸ‘΅πŸΌ

        Liked by 1 person

    • Nara

      Really?! From Butterfly Twists? I am addicted to their shoes – so great for commuting as they fold in half and fit in your bag. And they’re really comfortable! And cheap! 😊

      Liked by 1 person

      • Nara

        Yes, me too! You should try Butterfly Twists. They’re always doing offers on FB and I’ve ended up with about 8 pairs as they’re so good! Really reasonable (around Β£25 for most of the ballet flats but less in the sale) and they have loads of styles. And I love that they fold in half! I’m one of those people who loves portable little stuff! ☺️

        Liked by 1 person

    • Nara

      Thank you! I’ve actually worn it to work all this week and nobody noticed it was pizza, haha! It was a really nice night. Hope you are having a lovely weekend!

      Like

    • Nara

      Awww you must miss it! I seriously love pavlova, probably as Mich as I love pizza! Do you make your own meringue? I’ve done it a few times but I’m too impatient when they have such great meringue in M&S! 😜

      Like

      • thegreatpuddingclubhunt

        Hehe, I’m impatient too, actually scrap that, the meringue will just never make it to pavlova stage πŸ˜‡. It’s not cheap to make because caster sugar isn’t a standard type of sugar here and so we have to buy it from a speciality cake shop!! I love love love M&S meringue and cream shells…oh. My. I’m home sick now!!!! 😭

        Liked by 1 person

      • Nara

        Haha! I looooove those ones where they’re stuck together with cream and have chocolate on as well… I now want some! Good job there’s not one nearby! πŸ˜†
        I can’t believe you don’t get caster sugar?! You can make it if you have a Bamix apparently! (I have a Bamix but have never tried to make it as you can get it anywhere!)

        Like

    • Nara

      It was nice! We don’t do date night that much so it’s nice to do it now and again! (I’m usually desperate to get back home to Dog!) I love nights in too! 😊 Hope your weekend is going well!

      Like

  1. ashleykyleanderson

    I thought I knew most of the differences between British and American English, but I had no idea that arugula was called rocket over there! That just makes me want to laugh for some reason because I feel like “arugula” sounds so much more sophisticated than regular salad, but “rocket” does not have the same feel at all.

    Also, we never eat pavlova here and I’m not really sure why. I have made it before for Kyle to try, but I almost never think of it because we don’t often come across it. Your meal looks amazing though. I’m glad that you and T were able to get out and have a nice dinner together. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • Nara

      Hahahaha you’re right, rocket definitely doesn’t sound sophisticated! When I was younger I thought it must be “roquette” or something but no… It’s just rocket. We have a lot of differences for food! Zucchini is courgette, eggplant is aubergine, cilantro is coriander! Luckily we are the same on avocado! 😍🍐

      Maybe you don’t have cream as much? Pavlova and meringue usually has fresh whipped cream with it. I don’t know… I love American food (as you know I love all things American!) so I’m sure you have something equivalent! Although your chocolate I’ll never get used to… It tastes so weird. We’re bringing a load for my friend who moved there from the UK when we visit in autumn/fall! πŸ˜‰

      Liked by 1 person

      • ashleykyleanderson

        I did know the ones for eggplant and cilantro… Kyle likes to cook and so he has figured some of those out from British cooking shows. The zucchini one is funny though! Do you pronounce it with a french “g” sound? How did you learn all of the British-American differences? Do most Brits just know them because of all our TV and movies? I don’t think we have as much exposure to the British words and would say the average American wouldn’t know most of them.

        We do love our whipped cream here, but I think Italian and French desserts are the most popular (though I have only lived in the northeast so it could be different elsewhere). I almost never see desserts like sticky toffee pudding or other heavy British treats, sadly. 😦

        What is weird about our chocolate? Is it because we don’t have some random fruit flavor in it? πŸ˜‰ Haha, when we were in the UK Kyle couldn’t figure out why kit kats have orange flavor in them. We actually live very close to Hershey, PA (for the next week and a half anyway). I think the chocolate tastes better right from the factory but otherwise it’s not my favorite. Europe definitely does chocolate better. Oh, do you guys ever eat pretzels? We stopped at a rest stop on the way to Cardiff last year and there were 500 different kinds of crisps in every flavor imaginable but I could NOT find any pretzels! I do love British food (as heavy as it is) but I was a bit sick of potatoes in various forms by the time we got back.

        All this talk is really making me miss the UK now. And I’m also sad that Orlando is so far because otherwise it would be awesome to meet up for dinner with you guys in October! If you need anything though, my sister lives in Lakeland and my in-laws are about an hour and a half from Orlando and they would all be happy to help with anything. You’re going to have so much fun!!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Nara

        It’s like “koor-JET”, yeah like French! I think we know all the differences because a lot of our TV is American – I mean, when we were growing up, Friends was HUGE and nowadays we watch a lot of US TV. I’m probably more Americophile than most but I’d say that most of us in the UK watch a lot of American shows as we can get them on freeview (like cable). At the moment T and I are watching NCIS and I love all the dodgy reality shows on E! and TLC! πŸ˜‚
        Ah I know you have a lot of Italian desserts… When we were in NYC we had cannoli (?) and we also watch Cake Boss!
        Your chocolate is the one bad thing about America I think! 😊 It just tastes soooo strange – I can’t explain it but it’s a bit pukey(!) and cardboardy. In the UK we have milk chocolate, like Cadbury’s Dairy Milk, or Galaxy – both milk chocolate. We also have a lot of Swiss and Belgian chocolate growing up. It’s a bit richer. You should be able to get some in Italy and taste the difference! If you email me your address I can send you some to try! ☺️
        We do have pretzels but they haven’t really taken off yet… I LOVE pretzels but they’re quite uncommon here. You do get them in Switzerland and Germany as I’ve had them there. We have a place near where I live but they are more like donuts (cinnamon and sugar from Mr Pretzel: amaze!). In Switzerland they have a chain called Brezelkonig – Pretzel King. They are the savoury type. I think our crisps are a bit boring. I prefer overseas European crisps (chips!) or American ones. I LOVE Cheetos! Anyway you won’t miss any of that in Italy as the food there is the best! X

        Like

      • ashleykyleanderson

        That’s funny because we love British TV and are always looking for new shows to watch online! I think it is SO much better than American television. Better quality, better actors, and all that. I prefer your books too. I was only allowed to bring home 3 books from our trip last year but could have brought home an entire suitcase! (I have already read through our bookstores’ “British history” sections; they are quite small)

        Do you not have cannolis in the UK? Wow that’s so interesting because they are at every bakery here! It’s interesting to think of how all of the different cultures have influenced the US. We are moving to New Jersey next week where there is a huge Italian-American population (as you may already know or have seen from one of our great reality shows haha), so we are looking forward to the amazing pizza and Italian desserts! They are not the same throughout the US, that’s for sure.

        About the chocolate, we actually get Cadbury here, but only ever the eggs at Easter. Then last year they announced that they’re changing the American version of Cadbury to be more “American” and so that is disappointing. I won’t say no to receiving chocolate! Once we get settled in I can let you know our address… and send you some cheetos back!

        I’ve never been to Switzerland or Germany, though my mom did live in Heidelberg for a year as a teenager and my ancestry is British (English & Welsh mostly) and German. There is a large German population in Pennsylvania, which is where my parents both grew up (I grew up in Massachusetts), so that is probably why we are all addicted to pretzels! I am going to have to keep track of all the things to try for when I am in Europe next.

        Is it true that Brits think peanut butter is terrible? I’ve always wondered this. Haha, we could probably go on forever talking about our cultural differences! I love being able to ask all the burning questions I have πŸ™‚

        Like

      • Nara

        Omg you have to go to Buddy’s bakery from Cake Boss! It’s called Carlo’s. We might try and take a trip there at some point. We don’t have cannoli here – we do have cream horns which are a bit similar but made out of flaky pastry. I know food varies in different states as we Brits did not get on with grits! πŸ™‚ Also biscuits in the UK are what you call cookies. And your biscuits are like our scones only you have them savoury with gravy!! We have them with jam and cream for afternoon tea! We’ll definitely have to do a Cadbury – Cheeto swap, haha. As for PB – it is popular here but possibly not as much as in the U.S. I grew up with it overseas and I hate it! But plenty of people like it, and nut butter is considered healthy. We don’t really have PBJ though!

        Like

      • Nara

        No we didn’t go yet. Last time we didn’t realise that it was in NJ! May have to take a trip over. Although apparently there is one opening near WDW in Florida! 😍

        Liked by 1 person

      • Nara

        Oh I just realised maybe you meant snack food pretzels not the big ones. We do have those! They’re relatively new though. You can get them in most supermarkets although maybe less in Cardiff than in London. Also weirdly they always give them on planes!

        Like

Tell us your thoughts...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s