My favourite place

Especially during the ongoing heatwave, one place I really look forward to visiting is an ice rink in Streatham.

Jimmy, who organises ice hockey practices, kindly invites me to his scrimmages when ice time are available, and yesterday was one of those weekend days.

Before setting off to the ice rink, Hubbie and I decided to have brunch at Ozone Coffee Roasters…

We found no customary queue at this popular eatery and a smiley staff ushered us to a table in the basement…

For my pre-scrimmage food, I opted for gluten-free pancake with smoked pear custard, hazelnut meringue & rhubarb ambrosia. I also ordered extra strips of crispy bacons…

The pancake was divine! It was fluffy and the topping was delicious.

Envious Bella, staring at my pancake…

Sorry, Bay Bay!

After the brunch, I headed to the ice arena with my friend who wanted to watch me playing hockey.

What a bliss! It’s so cool and comfortable on ice!!

Unfortunately, there weren’t enough players to play a proper scrimmage and Jimmy set up a few drills for us and it was fun.

Only one goalie turned up but he was a really good one – very mobile and aggressive with his stick! One of the drills was we, forward players, were to receive a pass from the defencemen standing by the blue line and to shoot at the goal. My turn came so I sprinted out, received a pass and I was about to shoot. However, before I knew it, a huge wall in the shape of a hockey goalie was right in front of me and I had no choice but simply crashing into him. Because I was such a light-weight midget with less than 95lb, I ended up flying away like a deflected bullet while he stood still, like a bloody bank vault wall! How embarrassing…

Another thing I kept on doing during the drills was losing my footing every time I tried to do tight turning.

What are wrong with my skates today?

I took my gloves off and ran my finger on the blades after skating to the end of a queue. The edges of the top halves were noticeably dull and it was clear that they needed sharpening.

After the drills, we did a 3 on 3 scrimmage using the half length of the rink. Despite my skates skidding on the surface instead of biting into it, I somehow managed to stay on my feet and enjoyed the game enormously.

‘Wow, it’s so hot and sticky!’, my friend and I moaned when we walked out of the arena.

Then, we drove by my place first to pick up Hubbie and Bella, and then drove to my friend’s to rink up with her husband.

My dinner at Andi’s on Church Street, Stoke Newington…

Pulled pork bao! A post-scrimmage protein fix.

It is a shame that I can’t come to a Monday’s practice because my skates are left in the skate shop and they won’t be ready before Thursday. Oh well, I shall work on my shooting at home then…

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

Discord In The Omelette…

Three eggs omelette and salad at Shepherdess the greasy spoon is one of my weekend staples.
My No.1 favourite filling is cheese and eight out of ten times, I order the omelette and eat it with brown sauce.
By the way, my Hubbie is truly a creature of habit when it comes to ordering his breakfast / brunch / lunch at the Shepherdess. ‘Two fried eggs on two brown toasts and some cooked tomato, please!’ Sometimes, a waitress with a small pad and a pen in her hands asks him if he wants the usual so he doesn’t have to recite what should be on his plate. ‘Isn’t variety a spice of life?’ I tease him every time but he never heeds my suggestion.

Mmmm…, I fancy other than cheese in my omelette, I thought one Saturday morning as my index finger scrolled down the menu. Then, my wandering eye locked on the word “Greek Omelette”. Being intrigued, I asked a passing waitress, ‘What is Greek Omelette like?’ She replied it had olives and feta cheese filling. Sounded interesting so I gave it a try…

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How did I find it?
Meh, it was not as great as I expected. The flavour of the chopped olives in the omelette was a little too overpowering and the tanginess of the brine in where the olives were kept was very present in the egg mixture which I found a bit off-putting.
However, all was not lost for this dish. I found an omelette with morsels of feta cheese was quite a winning combination. The sharpness of feta cheese was softened by the egg and the saltiness added by it made the omelette enjoyable to eat without any additional sauce or seasonings.
‘I shall order it without olives next time!’ I declared cheerfully as my fork excavated olives which were embedded in the omelette. Hubbie, our in-house food conservative, looked at my plate warily and said ‘I knew it wouldn’t be good’.
Well, I would rather choose to be daring than a food bore (like him). Life is too short to be timid, don’t you agree?

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

Progress Report…

It was again another run of the mill kind of weekend, pottering around & taking things slow & easy. At Shepherdess the greasyspoon. I scribbled Mr.B’s name over my cheese omelette with brown sauce…

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I feel so much better than a month ago. Still, my fitness level is miles away from being fit and I am not sure when I can get back on the ice. When I am a little exhausted from running daily errands, a tingling sensation submerges from the back of my throat and urges me to cough. This worries me as if I have done too much or if I am having a relapse. It is so frustrating! I miss the training on Monday night and am depressed to see my hockey kit gathering dust by the doorway being made redundant for a very long time. Oh well, what can I do? There is no such elixir to restore my health & mojo instantly. I just have to be patient and let the time to do the healing. Oh, I am so bored…

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

Saturday @ Broadway Market

During yesterday’s errand, I was caught out in a sharp wintry shower. The rain was driving into my flimsy leopard print umbrella and the scenery I glimpsed through the corner of the shaky brolly was just wet & grim.
However, against my pessimism, the weather is rumoured to be better by this coming Sunday. Let’s have our fingers crossed!

I can’t believe it was only a mere two weeks ago when Hubbie, Mr.B and I basked in the warm sunshine at Broadway Market.

Mr.B was leaving his calling card at one of his favourite lamp posts…

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We parked our car around the corner from the market…

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Look how keen Mr.B was…

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Apart from an original street market on Broadway Market, there were two more sites accommodating stalls…

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A profusion of blue sky with very little breeze…

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Every direction we turned, there were at least a couple of stalls which were offering tasty looking snacks…

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Dutch mini pancakes with various toppings…

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Some middle eastern snacks?…

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A mega cute sandwich wagon…

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This stall was specialised in honey…

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On Broadway Market, free music was everywhere…

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He was so into his zone…

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This adorable duo seemed to be captivated by a trio of French musicians…

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The only drawback of this particular market was a shortage of suitable seating. Those who managed to grab seats were lucky ones even if they were in the shade…

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Most of us ended up planting our butts on the pavement…

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With Mr.B in the carrier so he wouldn’t be trampled by the market visitors, Hubbie and I looked around the stalls…

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On our way home, we dropped in one of our favourite stalls and bought cakes…

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Raspberry bakewell slice for Hubbie…

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and chocolate M&M for me…

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We also bought a bunch of tulips too…

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Don’t they look lovely? I love tulips.
Let’s hope this weekend will be a warm & sunny one…

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

Sunday Tea @ The Canal

Last Sunday after becoming more than full with the lunch at the Eagle, we decided to pay an homage to the Sandwich Barge.
The weather for the weekend supposed to be unstable, a mishmash of sunshine, cloud, rain, wind, etc.
Because of it, we even cancelled our trip to Holland Park. Then came Sunday, it turned out sunny and less windy than the day before. We were rather cross about this misinformation.
It was nearly 3pm already and wouldn’t have enough time left to travel across to West London.
By the canal, we could still bask in the sun while sipping tea & munching on a cake, so we reasoned.

The path along the canal was fairly  lively with the Sunday crowd…

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Next to Lorraine’s barge cafe, there was another canal boat, selling vintage clothing.
From the speakers on its roof, the ’50s pop music was played and the atmosphere around the barges was cozy and good-natured.

Most of the diners were enjoying oysters on Lorraine’s weekend menu…

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I wish if I could join them!
However, the pleasure had been denied to me ever since I developed a severe allergy to oyster 15 years ago. *SOB*

Instead, we ordered tea and just-out-of-oven chocolate brownie…

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We sipped our tea in the mellow afternoon sunshine.
Lorraine’s chocolate brownies were amazing. She mixed in walnuts in the dough. Baking made the walnut so soft, it melted in my mouth like magic. It was divine!

Then, we saw a family of swans went gliding past…

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A swan mama and her cygnet.
She chaperoned her four offspring up and down the canal gracefully.

After savouring our afternoon tea, we bid farewell to Lorraine and headed home…

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Instead of crossing the canal via Wharf Road Bridge, we carried on towards Shepherdess Walk.

Then we saw a cat cringing on to the side of the barge rather precariously…

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The cat appeared not too concerned about the situation it was in.
So I whispered to it ‘Puss, puss, puss’. And the cat meowed me back, like saying hello…

Kaori by Kaori Okumura

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