Sunday in Stokey – 22/04/18

Last Sunday was a busy old day. It started at 5am when I got up to go for a Dawn Chorus around Highams Park Lake.

I know. I mean I know, but I don’t really understand either. I can only say there was an element of peer pressure involved.

It was very pretty out there but very, very early. And a bit too full of nature. Sunshiney tho:

At the end of the walk, we stopped at the BRAND NEW CAFE Humphrey’s, which at that point wasn’t even officially opened yet. So no coffee but we got to use the loos, which is a much needed improvement up by the lake. It had its opening day on Thursday so we’re looking forward to going there when the ice cream freezer is full and the coffee machine is switched on. I drove home, got some coffee there instead and was at church by 9:30 to practise for worship.

After such an early start, I needed a decent lunch. So it was lucky that we had a lunch date booked in with an old friend at Cafe Zee in Stoke Newington. It was unlucky that Eva was in a particularly Eva kind of mood. We’d chosen Turkish food because of how much she yuvs “hayoomi” and “turkish sausage” but unfortunately they didn’t serve turkish sausage as a side and the hayoomi was, for whatever reason, not to her liking. Usual tensions. Not to the detriment of Cafe Zee, which seemed otherwise lovely and served a very tasty burger to Nathan and a very passable vegan moussaka to me (tasty but would have been better with some meat in it). There was a children’s cafe next door but we didn’t tell the kids it even existed so they would stay at the table.

The cafe also had some very imperious toilet graffiti. I’m prepared to follow two of these pieces of advice but not the third. I’ll let you work out which ones:


After all that food, the kids needed some fresh air. It was a sunny day and Clissold Park was bound to be overcrowded and hideous so we went for a walk around nearby Abney Park instead. It’s a fascinating curiosity – graves made wonky by mature trees growing through them and a chapel in the middle that has recently been restored and is now open for events. And a lion that looks like it’s eyeing Reuben up for its next meal:

It was shady and interesting but my kids are clearly lacking imagination and kept asking where the slides were. It was off to overcrowded and hideous Clissold Park then. It’s not the park itself – which is actually one of my favourites in London – but the sheer number of Stokey mothers who descend on it on a sunny Sunday afternoon.

We’ll skim over that whole bit. Look, Abney Park is nice, isn’t it?:

And I am more convinced than ever that Abney and Teal is set in Clissold Park now. This can’t be a coincidence.

But a quick teachable moment before I leave you. I am no longer the expert on buggy-travel that I used to be but I know this – never stop at the bottom of an escalator with a buggy. Especially when it’s turned sideways so it acts as a barrier to everyone coming down it towards you. There was a collision at Seven Sisters, which Eva escaped relatively unscathed but I banged heads with the buggy-wrangler and had a pleasantly dizzy feeling afterwards. But that could have been the 5am start….

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