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Journal

A jasmine scented wander round Clarendon Cross

If I could have looked into the future and seen where this life of mine was going to go, what would I have done?

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Would I have changed my path...tactics...choices. But then surely I would have lost all the wonders I found along the way, despite the difficulties

I don't think I'd change a thing. One thing I know by now is that no matter the choices you make, there will always be good or bad. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise

It's very easy to attribute blame retrospectively. This happened because of that, you got this because you did that. But who knows if it would have just happened anyway

I always try to remember - in particular when being given online advice or reading the press - about the correlation causation fallacy....when you see a relationship between two things and presume one caused the other, when actually it may have been something else entirely. Example...let’s say I used this certain stretch mark cream everyday and didn't get stretch marks so it must have been the cream, right? Well maybe….but maybe not. I might not have got them, even if I didn't?

It's a fundamental concept in research and a really good thing to keep in mind whilst navigating this new world of constant advice and fear-mongering

Aaaaanyway. On a lighter note I took Bumpette and Mabel down to my old stomping ground in Holland Park recently, where I spent many a sunny, jasmine-scented, dreamy, teenage day.

Admiring the Japanese Garden in Holland Park. Sadly no Mabel’s allowed

Admiring the Japanese Garden in Holland Park. Sadly no Mabel’s allowed

We walked with an old friend in the park for a good three hours or so - chatting life and adventures, while Mabel tried to break her lead to catch the squirrels - and then I headed down to the delightful-and-totally-incomparable Clarendon Cross, where I spent some of the happiest years of my life

A very familiar approach….heading down from Holland Park Avenue via Portland Road to Clarendon Cross. The route I darted down when going to buy a lemon for Donna Karen’s hot water while she investigated the beautiful antique goodies at VIrginia’s where I was working

A very familiar approach….heading down from Holland Park Avenue via Portland Road to Clarendon Cross. The route I darted down when going to buy a lemon for Donna Karen’s hot water while she investigated the beautiful antique goodies at VIrginia’s where I was working

One of the most magical spots in London in my opinion. The ideal resting spot under the shade of the tree and surrounded by some of London’s loveliest creative businesses

One of the most magical spots in London in my opinion. The ideal resting spot under the shade of the tree and surrounded by some of London’s loveliest creative businesses

We popped into the Cross (@thecrossshop) - one of the first "boutiques" - where I worked in the 90s and checked up on lovely Julie’s (@juliesw11) which will be opening its doors again very soon after a major refurb (extremely exciting).

First time back inside since I worked here in the 90s. One of London’s first boutiques and still as magical and colourful as ever.

First time back inside since I worked here in the 90s. One of London’s first boutiques and still as magical and colourful as ever.

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We had a wander around and lovely chat in @summerillandbishop, sharing stories of the old days and then popped over the road and swooned at all the goodies in @myriadantiques where I bought a giant. antique-glass effect bauble to match my growing sparkly Bumpette.

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Dreamy as ever, all these years on. Summerill and Bishop

Dreamy as ever, all these years on. Summerill and Bishop

We also gazed at the changed spot where a new shop had emerged all those years ago by a lady called Cath Kidston. Her floral teatowels and customised furniture pieces were lovely for sure, but who'd have known! Start trying out those dormant idea, creatives! You never know...

I was pleased to see that the site of my most precious of locations in the area - what used to be Virginia’s Antiques - had changed from a pretty generic looking nail bar to an extension of Summerill and Bishop. So many magical memories through that doorway. I failed to catch a picture but smiled to myself seeing that they had what looked like curtains for sale, mimicking the famous menu of the Colombe D’Or where I had sat just a couple of weeks ago.

Nostalgic moments at the site of Virginia’s which no longer exists here. I was very sad to learn that a flood lead to her closing up shop and moving on. From all I spoke to she is greatly missed in the area.

Nostalgic moments at the site of Virginia’s which no longer exists here. I was very sad to learn that a flood lead to her closing up shop and moving on. From all I spoke to she is greatly missed in the area.

Thankfully, much has remained the same and I truly hope it continues to do so. Most of the old joints remain, but those that have joined look like they fit beautifully with the area. Many new spots to investigate.

A happy spot outside    @suzyhoodless    design

A happy spot outside @suzyhoodless design

A little leftover piece collected from the gutter outside @harperandtoms flowers which I THINK is a different florist to the one that was there back in my day, but looked busy and popular all the same. They had clearly been creating some arrangements of epic proportions based on the bits and bobs left behind.

A little leftover piece collected from the gutter outside @harperandtoms flowers which I THINK is a different florist to the one that was there back in my day, but looked busy and popular all the same. They had clearly been creating some arrangements of epic proportions based on the bits and bobs left behind.

Have you visited Clarendon Cross? Do you have any memories to share of the place? If you haven’t, I strongly recommend you head along and start to create some of your own. Now….how to get a foot in the door and book one of the first tables at the new Julie’s…..?

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