Wow! It’s been a year since I came to London to see my partner, meet his friends and family and so on. It’s also been a year since we weren’t sure whether we could go on.
I’m happy I made that decision, because one year since that visit and here I am, living and working in London. After some seriously necessary time apart, we had a change of scenery and a small taste of what life would be like together but not in Martinique. If we can fall in love (again) here, then there’s no reason you can’t find a little summer love for yourself… Plus, I’m taken, so I have to live vicariously through you all! 🙂
What are the qualities that make a good place to find some summer lovin’ in London? The outdoors (it’s got to be warm); entertainment (there’s got to be something to do or talk about); people (duh); and finally, cocktails. Hey, I said “fling” not “good decision”…
1. Finsbury Park
Finsbury Park happens to be my local spot, but it also feels like high school again. Seriously.
The teachers are parents now, pushing strollers or playing tennis. Its proximity to east London means the endearing nerds have become lovable hipsters on park benches. The niners are teenagers – stay away. The jocks are practising (American) football or playing pick-up football (soccer). The stoners are still stoners, crowded under the hut passing joints and drawing way too much attention to themselves.
The class clowns are now lads in tank tops and aviators, throwing around a frisbee. That popular guy has a dog, because you know, having a dog is the grown-up equivalent of having a car – all the ladies want to cuddle your puppy. The popular girls are tanning and trying not to get trampled by the class clowns.
What makes this summer love worthy? Inevitably, the rain will come and you’ll seek shelter under someone’s umbrella or that stoner hut (hey, I don’t judge). Be cheeky, invite that guy/girl to a paddle boat ride in the pond 😉
2. London Fields Lido
You know what’s distracting when you’re talking to someone you fancy? Imagining them with their shirt off. Don’t judge me – you do it too. The lido is London’s only heated outdoor pool, so you don’t have to worry if you’re intolerant to low temperatures. There’s a really nice terrace and Londoners from and around Hackney head there in droves to cool down on a hot day. The advantage of picking up at a lido is that, for the most part, people are already half-naked. The mystery has been solved, so maybe you can focus on his eyes and not his biceps. Ha, who am I kidding – take it in!
It’s packed on sunny days, so once the pool is too crowded for comfort, invite your new man/lady across the fields for a pint at Pub on the Park. The pub has communal bench seating inside, so even if that person turns out to be a dud…well, you know, there are plenty of fish in the sea.
3. Frank’s Café
This pop-up bar on top a parking lot may not sound romantic, but the mix of the beautiful view of London, Negronis, and the knowledge that the place is only open for a short while makes people open to chat. You’ll get day-drunk, find the closest person to complain about the weather to (because summer – you know, that afternoon in July – arrives, it’s just too hot) and he or she will be surprisingly accommodating. The only logical thing to do next will be to kiss him or her.
Shoulder to shoulder, you will watch the sun set over London, admire the lilac and orange skies, debate the aesthetics of the Shard, and then wonder whether you should invite them back to yours. In that moment, you’ll realize you’re in Peckham, miles from home… Ah, fleeting romance.
4. Late at Tate
Wouldn’t you two have the cutest meet-cute story, to the envy of all your friends, if you met at a museum? What a cultured pair you are! Little do they know, Tate Britain puts on a monthly open late party with booze, music, film and fashion. You put on your sexiest outfit and prepared to dance the night away next to a Monet – plus, any amount of white wine makes you sound like an art aficionado.
By the end of the night, you’ve walked along the Thames, experimented with light and motion and explored representations of the female figure. You so nasty 😉
Know some friends who might like to find some summer lovin’? Feel free to share on Twitter or Facebook by using the super-easy share buttons below!
Lead photo by shutterfotos