A wise man named Samuel Johnson once said “When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life.” Well I’m not a man and I’m not tired of life or of London, but sometimes I do find London tiring.
I also think that when we become so immersed in London life, we run the risk of forgetting that life exists outside of it. So I think that once a month it is important to head to Waterloo, King’s Cross, Liverpool Street or whatever tickles your station fancy, and get the hell out of here. Explore the quaint villages of Sussex, Dorset and Devon, ride the train north to the Yorkshire Dales or to York itself, go punting in Cambridge, crabbing in Norfolk, swimming in Suffolk…
As it so happens, I’d been out of the capital for over a week until yesterday. My! What an itch I had! Like methadone to a heroin addict, was London to me…I needed to come back, I had to come back. Rested and rejuvenated the smoky fumes, moody people and crammed underground beckoned me.
Well that and my job. Last night I was sent to the Robin Howard Dance Theatre to review choreographer Bawren Tavaziva’s new show ‘Greed’, and I had a +1. Friends, that is another thing that I love about London, the friends that you made years ago, that splintered after school as you went off to your respective universities, now they’re back. You’re all in the same place. The added bonus of being sent to events; restaurants reviews, bar reviews, theatre reviews and art exhibitions, with a +1, is that I am given the opportunity to rekindle friendships that had floundered into semi-lit embers.
Which brings me to Richard Kemeny. Kenny and I were the closest of friends at school. Then June 2007 hit and our paths separated, from seeing eachother every day over the next five years we saw eachother just 4 times. This was until three weeks ago, when I invited him to be my +1 to Siro-A in Leicester Square. A writer himself and game for coming along to the more alternative events, after the success of our last reviewing experience, I did not hesitate to invite him again.
This time we went for supper first. Meeting at Warren St Station just after 6.30 p.m, the two of us embraced and set off to find Caprice Mediterranean Restaurant. Having just acquired an Ipad, I took the lead and started following the flashing dot on the map app…sense of direction has never been my forte and ten minutes later we were in the depths of a derelict housing estate, at which point Kenny suggested that I might want to put the Ipad away.
A £5 taxi journey later (taking us in completely the opposite (and correct) direction) we found ourselves outside of Caprice – a restaurant that I had found on top table. Situated just behind the Euston Road, Caprice was also, by my calculations, a two-minute walk from the Robin Howard Dance Theatre. A simplistic interior, separated into two main dining areas, Caprice was just what we were after – a relaxed in and out job. The waiters were quick and attentive, and the paper-printed menus contained the perfect array of sustenance to keep us going through the remainder of the evening (which wasn’t as successful). We decided to go for a series of starters – bruschetta,sausage, prawns and halloumi and we also ordered a bottle of Pinot Noir.
Both having given up drinking on Sunday, our two day drought meant that the wine gave us its full effect. And then the reminiscing began – accompanied by a lot of laughter. Working out that it had been 10 years since we first met, we – and the pinot – decided that it would be a good idea to have a photograph to mark the occasion. The two ladies and the neighbouring table obliged and after telling them that it was our ten year anniversary, but perhaps not explaining properly that it was our ten year platonic anniversary of knowing eachother, the stand-in photographer shouted ‘Hold hands!’ At which point, rather abruptly I shouted ‘NO!’
This received rather an odd look, which Kenny then made the most of: ‘God I take you out to dinner and you won’t even hold my hand.’ I got the giggles, Kenny got the giggles and to save the facade we took this little number:
Food-wise Caprice was quick, simple and very acceptable. It wasn’t expensive (£35 for two including a bottle of wine) and it was perfect for what we needed; a speedy but agreeable meal. The experience was fantastic and I haven’t laughed that much in a very long time, but Caprice can’t really take the credit for that – Kenny can.
Address: 3-9 Chalton St, London NW1 1JD
Phone:020 7387 2017