london | my summer bucket list


london goes mad in the summer time. it's like.. as soon as the sun comes out, we all know, really deep down, that it's not going to last very long, and so we should do ~as much as we can during the daylight hours, and ~drink as much as we can after that. the streets come alive with pop up markets and food trucks, and street performances, and our parks are suddenly filled with music festivals and fun fairs, and all sorts of novelty ploys to get us - and keep us - outside again.

a lot of the time, i take this for granted. the sun sticks around til 9 or 10pm, and it's kind of an excuse to.. stay out drinking cider with friends. not that that's a particularly bad reason to stay out, of course, but.. it accomplishes little, and i'd consider that a bit of a waste of a fragile resource. so, this summer i'm going to wrong some rights, and make the most of this fair city in the sun. i've devised a bucket list of things i want to do and try this summer, to kind of.. help me appreciate the short few months of sun that we have. i'm sure i'll be adding to this, no doubt, because if there's one thing i know about this city, it's that you never know what's popping up around the bend. but for now, this is a start.
i must see tay tay at british summer time festival. i went along last year with some complimentary tickets from my old job (on the day i handed my notice in, no less), and saw black sabbath. a musical highlight, for sure! this year i'm headed back, but to see queen taylor. i'm just as excited, i can assure you. i'm no festival girl, i like a warm shower and clean toilet, so to have access to such a great line up in my own back yard? yes please, i'll take ten.

there's always so many fresh food and outdoor markets and cultural festivals that pop up around june; southbank centre market right by borough market and the festival hall market (so much good food along the southbank!) are my two foodie faves, but this year i'm hoping to expand and discover some of the other foodie markets. you can even take a guided tour with best ldn walks, who have a sweet tooth tour that includes taste testing your way around some of covent garden's finest artisan bakeries and boutique sweet shops! while udderbelly lives on the southbank throughout the summer, i'd like to try some of the other alternate shows that pop up around the city too.

and then by night, i want to try each of the street food festivals that will inevitably pop up across the city. last week saw street feast re-launch in dalston yard, and the weekend before at the model market in lewisham (so close to home!), but last year there were at least ten different ones scattered across the city, and i only managed four or five. ~must try harder! as well as street feasting, there's always the challenge of street ~drinking. bars start popping up just about everywhere; on roftops, on barges, underground (naturally) and even... on wheels? my friend lou tried a pedibus a couple of summers ago and flippen loved it. maybe i will consider this for my birthday this year; it seems a great way to get friends together for something a bit different and fun.
on the talk of exercise, something i've been meaning to do for almost five years now is ride a boris bike around the royal parks. it seems like such a simple thing to tick off the list, but once i'm out in the parks themselves, it always just seems easier to walk than bike! also, the thames trail is one my mum recommended from her 'secret london' guidebook while she was here last. separately, we've managed to own a bunch of the parks and gardens around the city, but the thames path is still something i have yet to achieve. these two are non negotiables this summer.

rebekah organised a canal party for my thirtieth last year, and because of a glitch in the matrix, we never quite got to finish it. it was so much fun though, and such a great way to see more of the beautiful outer city scenes, so i'd love to have another go of it this year. another outdoor thing i didn't manage last year was outdoor cinema; always a fun, seasonal novelty, and i missed out. i have been to rooftop cinema and pillow cinema in the past so this year i'm aiming for either backyard cinema, secret cinema or nomad cinema - where there's always some really cool locations to hang out in while your chosen film plays on.

this is all on top of two already-booked holidays and me spending a lot of money on another pretty tattoo, so i think it's shaping up to be a very full few months! considering there are only so many weekends and after-school-nights to fit all this in - on top of regular broadcasting - i think i'm in for one bumper summer!

wish me luck guys, i think i'm going to need it.

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