I Loved You

Category: , By panda_eyed
I loved you; even now I may confess,
Some embers of my love their fire retain;
But do not let it cause you more distress,
I do not want to sadden you again.
Hopeless and tonguetied, yet I loved you dearly
With pangs the jealous and the timid know;
So tenderly I loved you, so sincerely,
I pray God grant another love you so.

by Alexander Pushkin

Currently feeling bruised (not physically) and sad. Will be back soon.. xxx

Afternoon tea

Category: , , By panda_eyed
I did something quintessentially English this week - afternoon tea at the Park Lane Hotel on Picadilly. It was a birthday present last year from the very generous Diva and Nags (thank you again!).

My friend and I arrived a little early, so we took a short walk through Green park to Buckingham Palace. The sky was moody and inky-grey, although it wasn't cold - again, very British!

We were seated in the Palm Court in the centre of the hotel - a beautiful room in Art Deco style. Since the atmosphere was very composed and civilised, I didn't feel right getting my camera out, but luckily there are some very good photos on t'internet!

There was a harpist playing sweet melodies, which was lovely and relaxing. We chose our tea from a large selection - difficult! I had Flowering Osmanthus, described as a "Sweet and gentle flowering green tea hand-tied around an explosive orange Osmanthus flower". It comes as a bud that opens up when the hot water is poured in. My friend chose Whole Rose Buds, which was so perfumed and delicate, it was like drinking crushed roses. Ooh, look, I've found a menu.

We were served some cute little finger sandwiches, each with a different type of bread - crab and cucumber, smoked salmon, coronation chicken, egg and cress, and beef and rocket. In my delight, I forgot to take a pic before I started, sorry!

Then came little fluffy scones - white and wholemeal - with cherry jam, orange curd, mandarin and pineapple preserve and, of course, clotted cream. They were heaven! I could eat these every day! The cherries in the jam packed a punch, as they were marinated in rum - yum! Having always been a very clumsy girl, I managed to drop a massive dollop of the blood red jam on the white white tablecloth and spent the next half hour trying to conceal the stain in order not to look like a ham-fisted idiot who shouldn't be allowed out in civilised society!

After scones, a trolley laden with beautifully presented pastries and cakes was wheeled over, and we each chose two: mixed fruit tart, coffee and banana cake, passion fruit panna cotta, and mango mousse. By this time, we were stuffed to the brim, but these were lovely!

All in all, it was a fabulous day, and a very memorable experience. We went for a spot of shopping in nearby Oxford Street afterwards. It's days like this that I love London :)