WIAW #19: Family Reunion

The only time I went to the USA was to celebrate my cousin Michelle’s wedding. I turned ten years old in New York State and distinctly remember a bright blue birthday cake. I didn’t eat it. In Europe, birthday cakes were made of chocolate, and they didn’t come from the supermarket but from my mother’s own kitchen. 

Since then, Michelle’s had two kids–my cousins twice removed, I guess. It’s so strange meeting family you’ve always known you had but never seen in the flesh or even spoken to. We spent three days together in London, me being the designated guide as usual. (I’ve lost count of the amount of times I’ve shown my friends and family around London; I get a little bit better at it every time). 

We went to my favourite tea shop: Whittard of Chelsea. We tried just about everything they had and had to tear ourselves away from the shop. I vowed to slave away all summer to go on a shopping spree in there. 

We also went to Buckingham Palace to see the change of the guards, something I’d never done before, and much to my surprise, we arrived to find an ocean of tourists there. I’d never seen it so jam-packed; I had to carry my cousins on my shoulders so they could have a peek at the parade. 

The aftermath; half the tourists gone. 

And after that, we made the mistake of going to Fortnum & Mason. My uncle John, who we’d found at the Palace (after much frantic searching), invited us all to tea. I’m not sure he realised how expensive everything was–Michelle, the kids and I shared an ice cream to save him some horrendous expenses. 

Would anyone like me to try and make these? They looked exquisite!

Sugar mice! I’d love to make a vegan version of this. 

Ice cream at the Parlour.  

Eating vegan was not always possible–and that’s ok. Sure, it’s possible to be 100% vegan all the time if you decide to be a sourpuss and not join in when your cousins want to have a gingerbread house filled with ice cream. I mean, that’s your choice. I probably won’t see this side of my family for another ten years (or however long it takes me to save up for a plane ticket), so I indulged for a couple of days. 

Must. Recreate. At all costs.

My body thanks me for being back to my usual diet now. I’ve missed having my dear veggies! Tomorrow will probably be all about green juices and smoothies. It’s too hot to chew anyway. 

— Clem

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