The definition of ‘shopping’ is ‘the purchase of goods from shops’. Hmmm. I think that pretty much sums it up. With children in tow and work schedules I usually know what I want to buy, go into a specific shop and buy it – matching this definition pretty well. But it’s also a wonderful passtime isn’t it? I used to love walking from one shop to another but the last time I simply ambled around a shopping centre with no particular agenda was years ago. But a couple of weeks ago, thanks to a last minute babysitting offer, I had the opportunity to do just this at Westfield London. No agenda. No list. No plan.
A little foodie tour (of course!)
I was a little peckish on arrival so we headed for a little pit stop at the Loft and Balcony area where there is a food court style arrangement of eateries. The first thing I noticed was the choice. Shopping centres used to have cafes and all the giant American fast food chains but nowadays you really can pick any international cuisine and be catered for well. I wanted little nibbles I had not nibbled before. We headed to Comptoir Libanis which has been on my to eat list for a while.
I was drawn to all the familiar dishes I make at home, Labneh, Baba Ganuj and Falafel to name a few but this evening was about doing things we would not normally do so we had Fattet Moussaka. A rich and velvety aubergine moussaka topped with tahini yoghurt,crispy pitta strips and fried onions. It was delicious and I was inspired with the tahini and yoghurt combination. Rather than wine which would have been wonderful with this, we opted for Rose Lemonade which was simply Morocco in a glass.
I rather like the growing style of shops that are a mini department store like Anthropologie. Clothes, books, homeware but no need to wander floors to reach the different departments. These two foodie books caught my eye – one full of mesmerising photography and other rich with inspiring words.
Onwards to Debenhams and House of Fraser which I am not resilient enough to visit with children. The things I want are too far apart and I don’t have the patience for all the escalators. But I love their homeware sections and headed straight there, delighted by a 20% offer section and a bargain find.
My husband then dragged me reluctantly to the Apple store. I have an iPhone and an iPad but looking at all the latest devices and drooling over them is really not my thing. Well until I found this gadget! Four lenses in a lightweight creation that’s easy to use and carry around – wide angle, two macros and a fisheye. It’s a pocketsize genius!
We then fancied a movie and popcorn. Something with no chipmunks or minions. Something with proper bad guy that doesn’t become good in the end. Something without princesses and fairies. Sadly there wasn’t anything that sparked our interest so we settled on a long and leisurely meal at LPDJ. It was the only restaurant that wasn’t ‘loud’. My forty-something ears need peace and calm on a Friday night and besides I wanted a little sophistication. Walking in to LPDJ felt like being back in a Parisian bistro. Starch white tablecloths, tables with little oil lamps and a vast menu. We were lured in by the lobster platters and the wine list. They even didn’t mind us entertaining ourselves with my new fisheye lens!
It was a lovely, impromptu evening. Thank you to the team at Westfield for inviting me to spend time at Westfield. Not something I would ordinarily have done but something that covered shopping, ambling and great food in one place- which after a very busy week is rather blissful.