etsy sunday (on tuesday): springtime in london

30 Mar

Sunday was a bit of a hectic day for more reasons than I can count, so my usual perusal through Europe’s finest Etsy shops is a little late this week. Fortunately, spring was not similarly interrupted. The sudden burst of cherry blossoms on the trees, the appearance of a sleek fox curled up at the bottom of the garden in a patch of morning sun, the careful planning of what shoes to wear in the morning in case the skies open in the afternoon — spring is quite definitely here.

My mum claims that it is because I was born on the rainiest, most thundery day of April that I love the rain. Rather than grey skies, when it rains all I see are vividly verdant lawns and hedges (which means, at least here in London, that I see A LOT of the vividly verdant lawns and hedges throughout the spring).

Mornings are full of the sounds of excited birds, fussing busily over their nests and crossly warding off nosey intruders. Already the noise of tiny, hungry baby birds is competing in the melee.

Waking up to that every morning is starting to have its effects on me. I’m beginning to be injected with a sense of urgency: to delve into every corner of my flat with a duster and attack the cobwebs wintry complacency let stay, to fill my flat with bright colours and fresh flowers.

Rather than bus up to the library, I want a brisk walk through the drizzle to take my work into cafes and bistros. There’s something so comforting about stepping through the threshold of your favourite cafe as the skies open in earnest behind you. I rather enjoy the pounding of rain against shale and glass when I’m tucked up inside, with a steady supply of tea brought over by an apron-clad waitress.

One of my favourite cafes in London is just down the road from me. It’s very child-friendly, which means that on rainy days especially it can get very noisy with the sound of delighted shrieking toddlers who seem to be experiencing the rain for the very first time. They hold out astonished gleeful hands to show their parents how wet they are and stamp about in bright, soft shoes if they’re still in strollers and printed wellies if not.

Later, after a couple of hours, the rain starts to thin out and the sun decides it wants to have a go, too. Around this time, I’ll put down my work, stretch and blink and look around. The toddlers have calmed and are trickling out. Other work-from-home types have already started to take their place. I’ll bundle up my things and head back. This time, I might meander and detour past one of the florists in Nunhead. Pick up something pretty.

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