Monday, 6 May 2013

a few lovely things

Hello blog. It's been a while.

To get me back into the swing, I thought I would talk about a few things that I really like. Namely - a coffee shop, a song, a poem and a view.

1) The coffee shop

One of my favourite cafés in Newcastle is Pink Lane Coffee - a v.trendy but unpretentious spot opposite Central Station.

So named as it's at the bottom of a little hill called Pink Lane, it would be quite easy to walk past this little gem. They've done the interior beautifully and, as someone who hopes to one day to open a café (although these days, who doesn't?) I really admire their carefully sourced, unusual wooden furniture and some lovely little finishing touches.

Examples: all the teacups are different (gold star from me), you get your milk in teeny little glass bottles with silver screw-top lids, the cushions on the squishy leather sofas in the window are covered in old coffee sacking. Nice.

The coffee is beautiful and very carefully chosen and roasted in-house, the paninis are v.tasty (recommend the houmous, red pepper, rocket and jalapeño), the staff are really friendly. In short, it's the kind of place you could sit all day, grazing on coffee and gorgeous cake, without feeling like they're trying to bustle you out or that you're out of place without a MacBook and an in-progress screenplay.

2) The song

Now, truth be told, the only reason I know about this one because it was listed in the regular 'mixed tape' page in this magazine.

But I'm glad it was. 'Sticks and Stones' by Siskiyou is a lovely little song, putting me in mind of fresh summer days and exploring new places. I think it may make an appearance on my summer playlist this year.

3) The poem

Not the whole poem, but a lovely part:

For I have learned
To look on nature, not as in the hour
Of thoughtless youth, but hearing oftentimes
The still, sad music of humanity,
Nor harsh nor grating, though of ample power
To chasten and subdue. And I have felt
A presence that disturbs me with the joy
Of elevated thoughts; a sense sublime
Of something far more deeply interfused,
Whose dwelling is the light of setting suns,
And the round ocean, and the living air,
And the blue sky, and in the mind of man,
A motion and a spirit, that impels
All thinking things, all objects of all thought,
And rolls through all things. Therefore am I still
A lover of the meadows and the woods,
And mountains; and of all that we behold
From this green earth; of all the mighty world
Of eye and ear, both what they half-create,
And what perceive; well pleased to recognize
In nature and the language of the sense,
The anchor of my purest thoughts, the nurse,
The guide, the guardian of my heart, and soul
Of all my moral being.

Lines Written a Few Miles Above Tintern Abbey
-- William Wordsworth

Which leads me on nicely to...

4) The view

So, after work last Friday, my housemates and I went camping near Bamburgh in Northumberland. 

On the Saturday morning I woke up at 6.30 and couldn't get back to sleep, so I got up and went for a little wander along a lane heading towards the sea. So beautiful! Everything was glowing with that gorgeous early morning gold light and the birds were singing and, oh, the air was so delicious.

Later that day we went for a proper wander along the coast towards Bamburgh Castle, and look, look how beautiful it was! Lots of sighing happened.

So there you have it. 4 lovely things.

Tuesday, 15 January 2013


This is a photo I did not take of a quiet, smiling young soldier on a train. Lucozade in one hand, high-fiving a gurgling, red-cheeked baby with the other - over and over again.

*An idea pinched from this excellent place.

Saturday, 29 December 2012