Lazy Weekends: Camden

At the end of last year I took the really big decision to stop trading at the regular markets I was going to most Sundays with DaisychainBaby. Both OH and I work full-time and with markets 3 Sundays out of 4 every month plus some Saturdays, it wasn’t uncommon for us to work 21 days straight without a break.

I don’t need to tell you how exhausting this could be, even though we don’t have children. The house wasn’t getting cleaned, food wasn’t getting bought and quite frankly, we just weren’t living. So 2015 has begun with a great sense of excitement as after 6 years I finally remember what it’s like to actually live a little at weekends.

With this in mind, we’re determined to get out and do things – it won’t happen every weekend and it doesn’t need to be a whole day but we live in one of the biggest and most beautiful cities in the world and we want to enjoy it.

This Sunday we set off early for breakfast in Camden before a mooch around the market. One of the advantages to having a dog is that for (hopefully) the next 15 years or so we won’t be sleeping in since she’s generally up and needing to go out by about 7.30 so we’re up and can get out early.

Setting off at 8.30 means deserted roads in London on a Sunday morning and after speeding across (or should I say under) the Thames, the satnav took us pretty much past all of the best sites north of the river – past the Tower of London and up into Theatreland before arriving in Camden. Parking is pants there so we parked a short walk away in Primrose Hill and walked back.

We came across Bowery Bagels Camden on Chalk Farm Road and settled in for freshly filled bagels packed with cream cheese, salmon and capers. I totally recommend this cafe – part art gallery, part recording studios it’s quirky Camden at its best and the food was delicious and good value.

Full of energy, we headed off into the market labyrinth. Considering I’ve lived in London now for 13 years and love my markets, I’ve not spent much time at Camden. A few of the shops/stalls weren’t yet open but we got the impression that it was going to get very busy very quickly and it did. The Stables have a fascinating history and were at one point home to 480 London horses, some of which were still working until well after the Second World War.

I’m a firm believer that anything can be bought there from trashy London souvenirs to vintage crockery and luggage, quirky fashion to 1980s sticker albums. Some of the shops left much to be desired but if you looked hard enough there are some very talented designers plying their trade and some gems to be found.

We picked up a jumper (for him) and two t-shirts (for me); a card which is just perfect for my Mum and Step-Dad’s 10th wedding anniversary in September and THIS amazing cushion.

After wondering round for an hour or so and starting to feel very cold, we headed back to Primrose Hill for the drive home and were back by lunchtime. The perfect way to spend a Sunday morning.

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