Market Heaven

I am the kind of grocery shopper who could spend an hour roaming the aisles of Whole Foods, reading ingredients and looking at all the different choices. My roommates back in Seattle often have to look through the store to find and remind me that I’m just there to pick up a few essentials, not the entire organic supply of ingredients. Weird? Maybe, but I guess that’s just the culinary-obsessed chef side of me. IMG_8599Now, I really dislike the word ‘foodie’ – it seems like over the past five years, this word has become hip and trendy.  People use it to sound like they know all the ins and outs of the food world.  It’s become so mainstream of a word that it makes the concept of markets overproduced. So excuse me when I say, I visited absolute foodie heaven the other day. Two words – Borough Market.  IMG_8593Only a twenty minute walk east of my new flat in southeast London, this massive market that spans across a few blocks is every food-lover’s dream. I thought I’d seen it all – after living in Seattle (home of Pike Place), visiting Chelsea Market and Union Square Market in New York, and countless others – but no, this by far tops the list. Fresh vegetables from nearby markets, loads of cheese and charcuterie shops, and gourmet prepared food carts with delicious smells emanating from them.  Apart from the wonderful smells and sights inside the market, the walk there wasn’t too shabby either. Passing the Shard and walking through Southwark is a fun and easy walk to do on a Saturday afternoon. IMG_8584As we walked around, I heard the trains rumbling above the marketplace and it jostled me from my mindset of amazement. It seems like the last week has been a serious vacation.. walking around to a new neighborhood of London each day, exploring and meeting the people around my complex. I feel like I’ve been floating around all week, not really grasping on to the fact that I actually will be living here for the next fifteen weeks. The only thing I know for sure, I’ll be coming back to Borough Market to pick up my produce each week and maybe a fun artisan bread or cheese.IMG_8605I’ve never been introduced to the delicious summery drink of Pimm’s – being that I’m not legal in the states just yet.  It’s so delightful and light and was the perfect accompaniment to the group of American students meandering through the crowded market. It seemed like every person in the bustling center had a cup with them, so why not join in on the fun?!IMG_8662On Sunday morning, I found myself awake early and needing to do something.  My morning run started off easy, thanks to a sore ankle, but became fantastic with the breathtaking sights I ended up at.  I had a basic route of heading east in my mind and seeing how far I could get and after a wrong turn, I looked up and saw the beautiful Southwark Cathedral.  The church bells went off at that moment and the magical feeling of being in such a historic setting was almost too much for me to handle. IMG_8645Only another ten minute run past the church, I wound up at Tower Bridge and the Sunday morning walkers were out and about.  I had to pinch myself because being able to randomly end up there was definitely overwhelming. I took a mid-run break there to take in the post-card worthy site before I began the run back to the flat. So, week one has come to a close, but I’ve got so many more to look forward to in London and adventures waiting to be planned.

If you’re an avid food lover, you should book the ticket now to visit Borough Market, it’s well worth it.  What’s your favorite culinary city? Tell me in the comments below!

LA + Last Days of Summer

So, I might just be a bit crazy.  I’ve only just got off a plane and a quick girls’ trip to LA for the necessary boy band concert and in only 24 hours I’ll be beginning the grand adventure to London for my study abroad.  Keeping busy, I guess you could call it? Among these nerves, last minute packing, and loads of excitement I’m trying to fit in a blog post just so I’m not a complete blog absentee.  Everytime I glance at the clock, I’m reminded that tomorrow brings a whole new level of adventure – alone and traveling to London without knowing a single soul. I’m excited – no, scratch that – I’m ecstatic for all that’s around the corner. With my summer ending and school calling via London, here’s how I decided to spend the last bits of leisure and summer wonders.10592835_10152317695443456_6063358313131462962_nThe view from our hotel room, both enchanting with the mountains and seriously urban with the typical Los Angeles developments. Wonderful to wake up to and even more wonderful to go to bed to.  My Seattle sister and world explorer of a friend, Julia, and I took a quick (but massively successful) trip to LA to celebrate the end of summer, her getting back from Paris and me leaving for London.  What a trip it was.10635860_10152315765158456_47861038932317387_nWe went to The Grove’s twin Americana in Glendale for a evening of window shopping (no income + leaving for London = attempting to save money) and hopeful celebrity spotting. Perhaps the most wonderful Anthropologie led us to giving the typical blog photo shoot a try.  All smiles and anxiety thinking about adventures ahead! 10603726_10152315764818456_5528120911777862353_nThe original Crispy Rice with spicy tuna at Katsuya. It really doesn’t get much better – as we sat there, the heat died down and the fountains began their show while the sun set. Absolute perfection!10687113_10152315765083456_2741880861031305103_nThe inevitable stop at Sprinkles Cupcakes for the heaven made Nutella cupcake was worth all the hype.  From the bite I had, it was something that makes me reconsider not enjoying cake. Mmm mmm mmm delicious!1501602_10203645377828347_8121612076528397579_oNow on to the main event of our trip – seeing the British boy band, One Direction, in all their glory at night one of their Rose Bowl stop.  Being born in the 90’s, I totally was a fan of N*SYNC but was always too young to go and see them when they came around to Northern California. So some fifteen years later and a boy band that isn’t too young to make us stand out as old geezers, this opportunity had to be taken.10660150_10152317695148456_399209362353320506_nIt was definitely one for the books.  There were fireworks, confetti and definitely one too many screaming, crying girls (I was not one of them, thank you very much).  With some strings pulled, we ended up with incredible seats, just four rows from stage and VIP passes to let us into a special pre-concert party.  Just being in the Rose Bowl was a success and top that off with five British boys and some pop songs, it was a wonderful night.

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Goodbye summer, goodbye California sunshine… I’m ready for some sweater wearing and tea drinking.  My bags are packed and the passport is stored in my purse. I am incredibly excited for all that is to come and I know that this is only the beginning of a life full of wanderlust and adventure.

What are you looking forward to this fall?  How do you celebrate the end of summer? Keep up to date with all my adventures and more by subscribing for email updates!