Monday, 24 June 2013

Pimms and Penguins

On Friday night Lovely Boy and I went to the Zoo. The first and last time we were here was just over four years ago now: on A Date. One of our first dates actually and it made for the ideal location given our awkward, bumbling, out of practice romantic intentions. Oh look a monkey! A pretty bird! A meerkat! etc etc.

This time around we're husband and wife and while arguably less bumbling, there was still lots of awkward distractions. Oh look! A man in a tiger print onesie! Oh look! A group of adult women getting their face painted! Oh look! Those two came dressed as a camel! etc etc.

We were there for Zoo Lates, a pretty brilliant enterprise on behalf of ZSL where the zoo is open after hours every Friday night throughout June and July. It's an 18+ event and for the bargain price of £12 you get to experience the zoo in all it's glory between jugs of Pimms (or craft beers if that be your thing) and carousel rides and cabaret performances and a dinner at an international food market. (I love everything about Turkish gozleme except for the fact that it makes me think of Bondi Junction first. And Istanbul second. Some associations die hard I guess...)

So it was a fun night. Turns out penguins are infinitely funnier after a couple of Pimms and that no amount of Pimms can redeem the sea sloth. 

It also turns out that a significant proportion of the London zoo-going demographic has a serious onesie fetish. Call me a killjoy (or just old) but I've never really understood the hilarity that comes with dressing up as a frog and wandering around in public drunk while trying to dry hump your girlfriend who's dressed as a zebra. 

Basically, it was an animal print onesie convention on Friday night and it was hilarious. 

And from animal print onesies to sex shops (not such a leap if you really put your mind to it) last night we went to la Bodega Negra for dinner. This was a belated birthday dinner request from yours truly – continuing my masochistic love of all things Mexican.

This wasn’t ordinary Mexican though. Which isn’t surprising when you consider that the unmarked entrance looks like the aforementioned sex shop and is in Soho no less. It was mind-blowing, world class Mexican (back to those leaps of imagination, sorry.) From the spicy yellow fin tuna ceviche to the sea bass done two ways, right through to the pulled pork carnitas, guacamole and tiramisu (and I don’t even like tiramisu) – the whole thing was a class act.  

The incongruity and surprising brilliance of the meal (You mean it lived up to the hype?! Who’d have thought…) was made succinctly clear when we clambered up out of the dark, cavernous basement and into the light. The sunshine might be yet to arrive this summer, but the long, light-filled days are definitely here. So here’s to making the most of them.

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