Valentines Day passed by pretty uneventfully yesterday. I guess it's a sign of things to come. This year, due to severe cutbacks, the overblown gestures have sadly fallen by the wayside. The surprise trip's to Paris on the Eurostar and the secret weekend's away to the country and the fancy restaurant dates have been replaced by a smallish box of chocolates and heart shaped cucumbers in a lunch box. No work + impending Baby = Harsh Valentines Cutbacks.
A card from a 'Secret Admirer'.
Prestat 'Fine Chocolates'.
My gift to The Wig. Heart shaped cucumber slices in his lunch box. One must never underestimate the romantic powers of the humble cucumber.
Today was, however, slightly more eventful. It started off pretty much the same as most of my other days lately. I got up, made The Wig a healthy packed lunch to take to work which he managed to leave behind when he left the flat 10 minutes later. Some people might take offence from his constant 'accidentally' forgetting of his lunch but not me. I think he does it for the attention.
However, after The Wig had gone to work 2 occurrences occurred which haven't happened before. Firstly, I found a grey hair (trauma) and secondly I saw a horrid ratty old fox walk across the garden, run up the stairs and brazenly try to get into the back door! Although, the fox is most definitely not a welcome visitor it did give me something to do as I tried to scare it off by lobbing hazelnuts at it from the bedroom window. Having a pathetic aim I obviously failed to make contact before anyone thinks about reporting me to the Fox Welfare Society, but if it comes back tomorrow I will be ready for it with a bag of walnuts. They have a considerably bigger surface area.
I also tried out a new restaurant today with my friend Theo who had invited me for lunch as a 'Congratulations for being Pregnant' treat. He suggested 'Meat Liquor', a burger restaurant based on Welbeck Street, W1. I'd never heard of it before so was very interested to go there particularly as after a qucik google search spewed out some very favourable online reviews. There seemed to be a lot of hype about this place with some people commenting that they had to queue for up to 2 hours to get in! (They have a 'No Reservations' policy). There was no way I was going to queue for that long so we met at 12:30pm to ensure we would get in.
However, for me, it really didn't live up to the hype or my expectations. At first I couldn't actually find the place and walked past it twice. I couldn't work out if there was a good reason for it not having a clear sign or wether it's part of its mystique. Maybe it wants to be so mysterious and aloof only certain people know its there. My friend had arrived before me, and while he was allowed to wait inside, they would not give him a table until I arrived. So while I wondered around outside for 10 minutes he was standing inside by the front door. Once I finally located the place and my friend, we were offered bar stools in the seating area in the centre of the restaurant. They do have some proper tables and chairs but by 12:30pm these were already taken. My friend asked if we could wait for proper chairs as it would be awkward for me to try to clamber on top of a stool and then we were promptly led to a back seating area with loads of empty chairs! Not sure why they didn't want us to sit here in the first place...
Once we were settled I soon noticed it was going to be quite hard to chat. The music was very loud, not ideal for catching up with someone you haven't seen for a year. Also, it was really dark. The section where we were sitting looked a bit like a serial killers basement, red paint splashed partitions and bare bulbs. I suppose it was more like a bar or club than a burger restaurant but still an interesting place to check out.
Despite my friend being an award winning Cameraman, actually I don't know if he has won any actual awards, but he is a cameraman, it was pretty much impossible to get any good photos inside 'Meat Liquor' due to the lack of light, but here goes...
So, its round here somewhere . . .
...oh yes, here it is.
The dome in the centre of the restaurant.
Walls papered with the pages of books. Travesty!
Perfect place to come if you don't like looking at the person you are having lunch with.
Drinks served in jars. I had this idea on my wedding wish list...boo.
My friends Chilli Chips. On reflection there is no amount of light that would have made these bad boys look good, although my friend polished the lot off so they must have tasted ok.
The burgers. Very nice but honestly no better than any other burger I've eaten.
So all in all, a lovely treat to be taken to lunch and try out somewhere new but I think Meat Liquor might have a slight touch of the 'style over substances'. Definitely worth checking out just be aware that you may not be able to hear or see anything. So all things considered I would give 'Meat Liquor' 6 baps out of a possible 10. I'm knocking a point off for the waitress who gave us our bill. The total came to £25, my friend put £30 on the dish and she asked if he wanted change. AWKWARD. The tip was optional but you certainly shouldn't ask should you? Aren't you supposed to wait and see? . . .
Finally, while I was 'Up West' I thought I'd stick my snout into John Lewis for a mooch around and I also needed to use the loo (I was too scared to go in 'Meat Liquor' in case I feel down the stairs into a dungeon), and it was whilst I was in JL that I saw my dream chair. For the last few years I've been keeping scrapbooks of pictures that I like from Interiors magazines so that when we finally move I'll have a good idea of how we can decorate the place. Also, keeping stacks of magazines is not ideal if you don't have the room to store them and they weigh a tonne when you have to take them to your next home. So, I've got lots of pictures stuck in A3 Artpads which include an amazing velvet button back chair from John Lewis. Its quite expensive, its in a colour that's totally impractical and most definitely not to everyones taste but I love it all the same. And today I finally got the chance to sit in it. I was really hoping it would be uncomfortable but I can honestly say it is THE most comfortable chair I have ever sat in. And now you can buy a matching footstool! Damn you John Lewis!