All you single cyclists. Now put your helmets on.

Yes, you. Single cyclists of London. Put your helmets on, get on your bikes and of you go to SPIN London – the Urban Cycling Show – where my tall and Dutch friend Marge organises speed dating.

“But I’m not going on a speed-date…it’s lame.” Wrong! Change your attitude and try before you die. You’re gonna love it. Cause this ain’t just speed dating. It’s Cycle Speed Dating. For singletons who madly love their bikes but would love someone less cold and steel in their lives, too. Cyclists that only once per month manage to pull out a Boris Bike are cyclists too, so if you’re one of those and single and this sounds appealing to you? What are you waiting for.

Marge organises Cycle Speed Date events since 2013 and she does that with so much love and joy, that I can promise you with a hand on my heart it will be an evening you’ll never forget. Expect a warm and fun atmosphere. Expect likeminded people who, just like you, wish it was as safe to cycle in London as it is to cycle in Amsterdam (if you’re shy, use that as an opening: “Have you ever cycled in Amsterdam?” Or if rather come across as someone more in-depth: “Let me ask you this: how can we make London as safe for cyclists as Amsterdam?”). Usually the Cycle Speed Dating events take place at Look mum no hands! on Mare Street, but sometimes Marge pops up elsewhere in town. Par example; this weekend. This weekend – beginning on Friday the 8th of May – you’ll not only have the chance to do some serious bike-shopping, but also to join Marge at SPIN London. If you’ve never been on a speed-date before, this might be the moment… I can feel it.

You may find the bike of your life. Or the love of your life. And if you’re extra I-am-a-Sunday-kid lucky you may find the bike as well as the love of your life (not necessarily in that order).

As a singleton, yes I know exactly where I’d go if I were in London this weekend…

Cycle Speed Dating is coming to a town near you this Summer...

Cycle Speed Dating is coming to a town near you this Summer…

Cycle Speed Dating sessions:
Friday, May the 8th @ 8pm
Saturday, May the 9th @ 4pm

Click exactly here for more info on this week’s speeddating, signing up and tickets.

And to follow Cycle Speed Dating on social media and be up to date with future events, follow this link and this one.
Cycle Speed Dating events are coming to a town near you, this Summer!

Passing by

Dreaming of glass

Look at this.

Glass.

Most of you would have passed by a junkyard filled with glass like this. My radar, however, starts beeping out of control. My head explodes. My camera takes a thousand pictures. One of my favourite hidden gems in London.


I’ve passed this little glass-collection – on the corner of Middleton Road and Haggerston Road – many a time when I was in London. Every time my heart pumps faster. Skipping beats. As though in love. It’s a combination of the colours and structures of the glass and the abandoned atmosphere of scenery. The few little flowers breaking through the concrete walls. The note on the door. The owner never reached.

Just gorgeous.

I can spend a whole hour watching, peeking over the wall. Always.
Incomprehensible to you, maybe. I understand that.
It’s probably just glass for you. Just someone who forgot he ran a business. Just what looks like glass bathtubs.
Nothing special.


I think it’s mesmerizing. Not damaged goods. And I won’t stop looking at it. Until the owner sells the place.
I hope Haggerston – or whatever London council the glass garden belongs to – can see the value of this beautiful spot.
Preserve it. For the greater good and the dreamers’ hearts! I know I would…

 

[ these pictures are all mine! using or sharing? great! please do contact me beforehand ]

Something old, something new

A New Year. Like any proper New Year, 2015 demands some changes from me. Or better, I decided on some changes… have you noticed the two new pages I added to my blog? Starting 2015 I’ve decided to make life a bit more logic and easy for myself. I’m determined to continue writing this blog and developing my own little business, but I can use a bit more focus and funnelling instead of drifting. And here’s my first step.

If I were in London right now
You could say London is a project of mine. Or at least, writing about it. It’s a place on the planet that stole my heart and after having lived there in 2011 I started my first blog If I were in London right now, sharing my favourite places and hidden gems.

As of January 2015 If I were in London right now will be part of Tessie’s Projects. It makes sense to me. I love writing, I love going to London as often as I can. But right now, writing and maintaining two separate blogs is not what my body and mind need. The old blog will keep on existing. However, when I feel the urge to share some London-related stuff I will do so at Tessie’s Projects. It will be neatly categorised under If I were in London right now.

Expat meet Local
Moving on to the other new page. A page that might be interesting for you if you a) live in The Netherlands, b) are a local Dutchy living in The Netherlands who likes to meet other people or c) are an expat living in The Netherlands who likes to meet other (Dutch) people.

Expat meet Local was set up by me in June 2014. You may have guessed: it’s my intention to bring expats and locals together by organising little events. During Summer these events may be picnics, in Winter we go indoors. No sane Dutch person picnics during Winter.
Expats hang out with expats, locals hang out with locals. When you’re an expat you seek like-minded souls, when you’re a local you may just love your life as it is. Being a dreamer, I dreamed of changing this… wouldn’t it be just great to meet people with different backgrounds, from other countries and cultures? Then, from dreaming I moved on to realisation!
In 2015 I will continue bringing expats and locals together by organising little meet-ups. Knowing that people go home after an event with a new friend or squash-buddy, having learned and tasted something new. It brightens up my life. Simple as that!

So all you expats and Dutchies, all people dreaming of moving to The Netherlands or wanting to meet new (Dutch) people? Have a look at the new page for more information on Expat meet Local and be welcome to join us at our New Years reception Sunday the 11th of January.

Proost! E-flyer

 

Yes, a New Year. I hope you all will have a good one! And remember; most of the time you yourself can make your year as good as you want it to be. It’s in your hands, you are in charge. Most of the time…that is.

 

Jordy is in London.

Jordy sometimes works for the opera in London.
Spending a couple of weeks or months there.
Part of the stage managers team.
London being my most favourite city on planet Earth, I wish I could be Jordy at these moments.
Jordy has just left for London again.
For a month and a half.
And he asked me if I had any tips for him.
Well of course!

Lieve Jordy!

You’re well aware of the saying be careful what you wish for, right? Asking me to write down some tips is such a situation. These are things you really should do in your spare time – if you have any:

You are not too far away from Kew Palace and Gardens I believe? Get a bike and cycle there! Check out the palace and gardens – I’ve never been, but it looks beautiful. Check the opening times as well, though; I believe Kew Palace closes end of September. The gardens don’t.

As a medium rare bookworm I would go to The Chiswick Book Festival and as you’re now officially a Chiswick dandy, so should you.

The Old Cinema. Need your favourite antiques-freak say more? Don’t think so. And yes, absolutely, feel free to buy me a souvenir there. Souvenir hints in your mailbox.

Another place where you are absolutely advised to buy me a souvenir is LASSCO. I’m gonna get married at LASSCO. One day. At LASSCO, you should also go for lunch.

After LASSCO you can go for dinner at the hidden Bonnington Café. You know I love hidden. This one is in my top 10. Bring cash, buy your alcohol beforehand, expect delicious veggie and vegan food for a bargain and a lovely atmosphere. Also cross the road to check out the Italian shop Italo – such a sweet little corner shop.

To stay in the antique-mood a bit longer go and get lost at Alfie’s.

In case you cannot stand anymore opera I advise you to go to my favourite hangout, the Jamboree
and make sure the voice of Whiskey Moon Face singer Louisa sweeps you off your feet. You could also go and enjoy some fine Jazz tunes at the Vortex.

Another must is Nana’s: good food and super Grannies guaranteed!

If you’re really homesick, go hide on this Dutch barge The Tamesis Dock, and sip a Dutch Grolsch (for only £4,00… but thank goodness they’re far more original than just Heineken!). Their website is funny so I have high hopes for the bar.

For a nice little wine you can stay in the hood by the way. Pickwick’s wine bar is said to be exceptionally friendly and according to londontown.com the “live music is of reminiscent of the seventies and eighties – as is the decor.” LOVE!
The address is 13 Devonshire Road, London W4 2EU.

What the Dickens are a set of amazing fellas who prep breakfasts that reach beyond The Breakfast Club. You will find them at my once very local Chatsworth Road market. If you’d go there you’d be killing two birds with one stone. Awesome!

Eat a Dirty Burger! They have more locations but this one near Hampstead Heath is my favourite… I’ve been making Dirty-Burger-Detours for more than a year now – it’s a 15 minute walk from the Heath and even after a day of flying your kite on the Heath or going for a long walk, it’s more than worth the detour. Hidden, which makes it even more fun (well, to me it does…childish mind set, you know I have) and the burgers are a delight! You’re gonna thank me for this one. I know it.

Okay, I’m gonna love you and leave you with this insane list for now. It might be wise to consider a sabbatical! But you asked for it. Promise to come back to us when you’ve ticked off the list. And in case you tick it off within two weeks, check out my other blog about London.
I haven’t posted any new posts up there for a while, but still…you may find some nice finds!

xtx