East Meets West
Dressing like Heidi circa 1979 while buying Pocky (new favourite thing) in Chinatown… London is a city made for culture clashes which might just be why I love it.
I’ve realised that using a basket instead of a bag is the easiest way to make those well trodden paths around your home town feel like a day out in a cliched old movie. You’re suddenly compelled to wander rather than heading home on autopilot, buy ridiculous and delicious things you don’t need and generally be less hurried, more carefree. Somehow this would feel ridiculously twee in Paris (the Breton stripes and basket is probably over kill for a real Frenchie), but in the depths of Soho surrounded by dim sum, bao buns and Chinese moon cookies, somehow it feels weirdly apt. London never was one for conformity…
Feeling like a tourist in your own city is a bit of a must from time to time, but while great in theory, it’s often kind of tricky to execute. It was only the other day I was talking about the joy of JOMO and playing it safe in the bubble of familiarity, but this impractical yet very loveable basket reminded me of the equal joy of getting lost on the streets you call home. One of my favourites things in Paris, New York or indeed any city that isn’t home, is to walk everywhere with no clue where I am most of the time, and yet in London I uber constantly and blindly, with my head pointed down towards my phone the entire journey to the point of feeling car sick and disorientated by the time I get there.
So, if it takes a basket and good pair of walking boots (metaphorically speaking) to make me walk an extra mile or two when I’m out about at home, that’s what I’ll do. Side note, I’m now craving a sticky beef bao bun, a fortune cookie and anything lychee flavoured.
Ph. by Frances Davison