We like to be the first to try things out. We got into the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park as soon as it opened – albeit unintentionally – and I get annoyed if we’re late to the party on London-y, toddler-y things. So when I heard that a playground was reopening in Walthamstow’s Trendy Wood Street TM, I wanted to be there for the opening party.
So we were there. So were many other people – there was a steel band, a gospel choir and a magician. There was a cake stall and lots of local groups like the scouts and the police but all Reuben was interested in was the playground and he and Nathan headed in that direction. Although apparently he stopped to dance to “We wanna see Jesus lifted high” by the gospel choir, saying “I know this song from kids church!”. I was busy talking to some people who were putting together an art installation that’s going to be on in the indoor market. It involved them filming me talking about my favourite film – the one with the singing nun and the unruly youths. So I missed Reuben dancing and his discovery of a giant, seesaw affair which is powered by several children rushing from one side to another:
In this picture, there aren’t several children – just one adult, so you don’t really get the full effect of it. But Reuben thought it was pretty cool. There were also wooden animals, several climbing frames and a lot of little doors cut into the fence, which were just perfect for losing a child through.
Where was Eva? Well, this is becoming a recurring theme whenever we go to an exciting new East London park...
Do take a moment to consider the full glory of those leggings though. X will be jealous that they haven’t yet made their way to her family.
So, Eva slept, I listened to the gospel choir singing 80s classic “Jesus, We Celebrate Your Victory” and Reuben span himself until he felt so dizzy that he had to lie down:
Then we spotted another play area on the other side. This was designed for bigger kids, with swings you could stand on, and a giant hamster ball. As Reuben said “It’s like a hamster ball but bigger. It’s for people!” People that like to trip over their own feet and fall over, as Reuben demonstrated.
He was OK. Better than the teenager that ran full pelt into the metal gate anyway. I think everybody cringed at that. It even woke Eva up, who indicated that she wanted to play, but could be persuaded to stay in her buggy as long as the next stop was the cake stall:
Mmm, cake-y. The cakes were from Aura Rosa, and they were awesome. I had a vanilla sponge with raspberry and meringue topping and Nathan had the swiss roll (above). The kids enjoyed their cupcakes too:
It was time to run off some of that sugar, so we went back to the playground and Eva got a chance to try out the climbing frame:
She kept sliding down that white bit, before we persuaded her to use the actual slide:
And then it all went badly wrong. Roo was back on the spinny thing, and Eva wanted on. I should have been watching more carefully, but had just seen an exciting pregnancy announcement on Facebook, so looked up in time to see Eva faceplant on the wooden base.
There was blood. It was a bit nasty. She still has all her teeth, but she also has a fat lip. It was time to go home.
None of which is Plaza Park’s fault. It’s a great new addition to the Walthamstow play scene and on a handy bus route from our house. We’ll be back.