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Dr John Hawkins

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Posted on 2007/12/18 22:50:08 (December 2007).

[Saturday 15th December]
It was a very family oriented sort of weekend. Vera and Robin (it occurs to me that not everyone who reads this blog necessarily knows me that well, so for those of you in that category they're my Grandmother and Uncle respectively) were coming to the South East for the weekend, for a combined visit to see me and Chie, as well as my brother and his family down in Guildford.

So Chie and I got the train down to Guildford towards the end of the morning. As we'd done previously, to avoid the crowds at Victoria we got on at Vauxhall, and enjoyed a very pleasant cappuccino from the little coffee stand there. We also had a while to wait at Clapham Junction, which oddly I always enjoy, as there is something bizarrely fascinating to me about this station. It has a certain aura about it, and changing there is always a pleasure, in a similar vein to the fact that changing at Crewe is always horrible.

We arrived at Guildford station around 11:30, where we met up with Vera and Robin and then proceeded to my brother's new house - him and his family had just moved into it a few days prior. I have to admit I am somewhat envious of their new kitchen - it is big enough to have a dining table in (in addition to their separate dining room) and has a rather fabulous range style cooker in it.

We had lunch there and then spent a couple of hours with the kids. They seemed very happy indeed with their new home.

Towards the end of the afternoon we headed off, the plan being that Vera and Robin would drive us back into London and stay the night there. It's more or less the first time I've done the journey from Guildford to London by car rather than train, and I found it all quite interesting. Navigation wasn't as tricky as I'd anticipated, and the traffic wasn't too bad either, so by the end of the afternoon we were back at our flat in London.

For dinner we went out to a nearby restaurant called Uno (not to be confused with the Caffe Uno chain) which Chie and I had spotted a few times and thought looked rather swish. All in all we haven't had such a great track record of restaurants near where we live - overall they've tended to be a disappointment more often than not. The place tonight however bucked that trend - I thought the food was of a really decent quality, and it was also quite an interesting and creative menu. I started with a dish of polenta and wild mushrooms, and my main course was a particularly tasty and satisfying porcini ravioli. Some of the best Italian food I've had in London (although thinking about it now I haven't really been to a huge amount of Italian places in London as I've been infected with Lorenzo's snobbery over Italian food outside of Italy and there is so much else on offer in London).

So anyway, a jolly nice day all in all.

Comment 1

Finally I see that YEARS spent brainwashing you about Italian food outside Italy is paying off! :D

Posted by Lox at 2007/12/19 07:00:40.

Comment 2

Yes, I find Clapham Junction a fascinating, though I have only ever seen it on video/TV - and of course the famous old film/book/song "Up The Junction."

Posted by Nigel at 2007/12/19 09:44:58.

Comment 3

I always find names like Clapham Junction and Cheam create an immediate mind's eye image of times gone by - I suspect I'd be deeply disappointed if I ever got to go to Cheam and didn't see Tony Hancock coming out of the Hand and Racket with Sid James and Bill Kerr in tow, which of course could never happen anyway! Strange how names can do that.

Posted by Bryan at 2007/12/19 19:12:57.

Comment 4

...or should that be Hand and Racquet??!! :-)

Posted by Bryan at 2007/12/19 19:14:21.

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