Saturday, June 27, 2009

Bakewell Tarts coming soon to a post near you...

As you read this, we are in the middle of moving the whole circus troupe to Paris, so while I barely managed to make the Bakewell tarts at the very last minute (thanks to a kind soul's oven), I haven't had time to download the pictures and do that whole tra-la-la.
I don't know when we're going to be up and running with internet and everything but hopefully very soon (no one wants to live with me very long if I am sans internet. I went to Stanford people, at the time it was one of the only two fully networked campuses in the US and I remember Mosaic Netscape when it was literally 5 or 6 pages and you could actually get to the "end" of the internet, so I don't take kindly to being sans network for too long - it gives me the shakes...)
So coming soon... and also, heh, I'm going to be giving away some neato cookbooks shortly after we're back up and running, so you might want to sneek a peek from time to time so you don't miss out.
As always, thanks for stopping by to begin with.

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Sunday, June 21, 2009

Richmond Park

I know I've mentioned that I love Richmond Park at least twice on this blog, once in the last post. So what's so special about Richmond Park you say? Well, I'll show you...

This is Richmond. Not the park, the borough. Just giving you an idea of how lovely it is and you're not even in the park yet. Oh and yes that's the Thames River.

Richmond Park 1

This is a typical view in the park. And it's a sunny day, so there are lots of people there. Yep, that's lots of people.
See something in the grass in the distance, close to the trees? No? It's too far, right? Let me take you closer.
Richmond Park 2

Yep, your eyes do not deceive you. Deer. Dozens of deer. Hundreds of deer. OK not hundreds of deer in this picture or even in this area, but throughout the park. This is why I love Richmond Park. How come all the (apparently unmolested) deer you ask? Let me 'splain.
Richmond Park 3

Richmond Park belongs to the Queen. You've heard of her, right? Little, white-haired, 80s, answers to the name of Elizabeth, though there was another Elizabeth before her so she's the second Elizabeth. But why am I showing you a bunch of deer butts in this picture you say, interrupting me? Because I love the little bird perched on the middle deer. It's like those little fish that attach themselves to shark to clean them of parasites. Well, that's what it makes me think of.
Richmond Park 4

Anyway, it's the largest royal park in London and because it's a royal park, the deer belong to her. So you better not be gettin' up in her little crown about wantin' to shoot yourselves some deer now 'cause it's illegal. Just try to adopt a zen attitude, like these two gals...
Richmond Park 5

You know...relax, have a snack or beverage of your choice, like this young couple. Right? That looks like a young stag to me because he's only got 6 points and it looks like he's got 4 more coming out. Anyone more versed in the growth patterns of deer want to enlighten me?
Richmond Park 6

I don't know how you react when you see this, but I want to cry out "Bambi! I'm sorry about your Mama!" although technically, anything louder than a whisper sends them bounding off so maybe not.
Richmond Park 7

And now it's getting to the golden hour and--there's one of those birds again! And he's perched on the young stag! Had to take a picture.
Richmond Park 8

The most amazing thing is how used they are to people being around (as long as they don't get too close). I mean, seriously, when have you ever seen a Golden Retriever that close to a herd of deer? She wants to go home, he looks back wistfully at what could have been...
Richmond Park 9

Ah Richmond, I heart thee. If we'd been allowed to live with you while we were sequestered in this country, we totally would have. I'll miss you, but there are beautiful places where we're going too.
Richmond Park 10

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Monday, June 8, 2009

Petersham Nurseries


This post was originally going to be about Petersham Nurseries and Richmond Park, but the baby and the packing to move again got the best of me (and Blogger was no help whatsoever being down all the time). As you can see from the date I originally started writing this post up on the 8th of June. Yep. And then it occurred to me just a couple of days ago that I was being far too ambitious, that trying to sort, pick and post-process the pictures from Richmond Park on top of the ones from Petersham Nurseries was just going to be beyond my capabilities right now. In fact post-processing just the few pictures I picked from Petersham Nurseries was beyond my capabilities, so here they are unprocessed, except for their size.

If you happen to live in London or around the Western shores of it and haven't been to Richmond Park, let alone Petersham Nurseries, you must go NOW. OK maybe tomorrow or some day when the weather is nicer. But go as soon as you can, and if you go to the Nurseries, try not to drive, you can get there by public transportation (it's a whole thing with their permit to be there or something or other like that because zoning and permissions are an abomination to obtain and keep a hold of in this country).

Others have blogged about Petersham Nurseries before me, notably Keiko Oikawa of Nordljus and Shuna Fish Lydon of Eggbeater. They have a restaurant and a tea house there. Really that's just a fancy way of saying they are set up for dining in the hot houses and outdoors.

The food is lovely as is the setting, but it's all a tad more rustic than you would expect. We went there with Baby Saffron on a weekday when it was really hot and it seemed like a good idea to be sitting outside in the shade enjoying some good food and drink, but actually when we got there, even though the restaurant service was over, we weren't allowed to sit at the outdoor restaurant tables (Neither A. nor I really understood why) and since the other outdoor tables were all taken (and in full sunlight)and those that weren't were in a far corner by a crumbling wall with a bunch of construction and gardening equipment by them, we chose to eat in the hot house, which as I'm sure you can guess, was sweltering even with both doors and all the windows wide open. Not a way to win a new Mother's heart for sure, although they are wonderful nurseries if you're looking for plants and the food is great.

I'll blog later about Richmond Park which I just love love love (hanging out with the deer) when we're not in the middle of boxes and more packing and moving again with little Baby Saffron.

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