City, Seen: Elelta’s London City Guide
Elelta, Gavin and Hana. London, England
Welcome to our first post in a new series where mamas from all over the world take us on a tour of their cities. Join us today as Elelta takes us all over her personal London-town.
What are your favorite places to…
Eat with the kids?
Tabernacle in Portobello. They have lots of space, low seating and make a great Goat Roti! You eat and drink all the while surrounded by Notting Hill Carnival paraphernalia, one of the steel bands – Mangrove – use it as their base and the venue itself is historically deeply linked with Carnival.
Shop for kids?
Satsi in Portobello, Rosie who owns it makes lots of the clothes in the shops but also sources really fun and durable gear for babes.
Eat with adults?
“Mosob on Harrow Road is my go-to place for yum comfort food. It’s a family run Eritrean spot, they are super friendly and until recently the matriarch of the family used to cook all the food (she has now written all her recipes and handed the reigns over and the new chefs have proven themselves with great aplomb)”
Play with your kids?
“The myriad of parks near where we live in the summer and in the winter the soft play centres in our area, though Hana is only 7 months so our play can be anywhere so often is where ever we end up. A new thing we are trying is the local swimming pool. Hana is a water baby!”
“Science Museum / Museum of Childhood in Bethnal Green / Horniman Museum & Gardens, this is the south London spot that people often miss out on. Great free and paid exhibits and a huge garden to play in. On a Sunday morning there is a farmers market too!”
Where do you take visitors?
“Abu Zaad in Shepherd’s Bush, this is the spot for a quick and cheap stop to fuel a day out in London or a languid dinner with arabic tea or coffee for afters. They have a few spots in but the one in Shepherd’s Bush is the one. I once took Ishmael ‘Butterfly’ Butler and he still raves about it.”
Must see tourist spots?
“The top of Primrose Hill, a great vista, Crystal Palace Park is very underrated as a London Park due to its location out of central London but it really it worth the trek. They have surprising and wonderful sculpture and a great lake. Finally, the obvious but rather impressive Big Ben.”
What’s your favorite view:
Describe your perfect day.
“Wake up, make some breakfast – home milled oat flour and banana pancakes with berries and then go for a walk in the park behind our flat with the babe and boy. Continue into Portobello to stop off at the Trini Man food stall on Goldborne road to get a lunch of Salt fish and Akee for me and Curry Goat for the boy. We’d then walk up to Kensington Gardens and sit by the round pond and watch the swans. Ending the day with the long walk to Harrow Road for dinner of Alicha Fitit and Shiro at Mosob all topped of with more walking, home along the Grand Union Canal.”
What is unique about living in London?
“That you can find anything you need or want, anything!”
How has London changed for you since becoming a mother?
“It’s suddenly too loud for my sleeping babe, suddenly too busy and suddenly too big. All the things I loved about it are the same things that make me dislike it. Though I have found that London’s ability to be big and also local has been great; I’ve rediscovered my endroit.”
What’s your favorite place to get lost?
What makes London home?
“My friends & family, as I’ve grown older I have found that a place in of itself doesn’t make a home. I have felt less and less at home in London as a whole but felt more at home since the birth of my child. Home is seeing my little family and they are in London so they make London home.”