Because shivering over waffles and coffee at Hideaway in London's new definition of Spring is the best way to start conversations.
The weekend always starts in a frenzy: a second spent too long daydreaming, a late bus (a constant woe but bus views are so much better than the underground!), a scramble across the streets cursing my choice for heels... you get the picture.
And of course, no London Spring is complete without a shower of rain, a dreary grey sky or a frigid wind having you wonder if Spring really, is Winter disguised.
Classy, reserved, chic.
Of wide cobbled streets, exquisite architecture, beautiful restaurants...
...and this klutz frantically google-mapping her way to Hideaway, eyes peeled for a familiar silhouette. A cafe whose branding identity and even toilet were a very aesthetically pleasing melange of objects.
*By now, the coffee had arrived, food was served and the conversation was rolling.*
Even the cold morning air and my lack of sense to wear something thicker could not mask the wonders of great company, coffee and really (like REALLY) delicious waffles.
Next to our table came a group of impeccably dressed people completely at ease in the almost haughty Marylebone air. Well, see now, visiting Marylebone was like walking into a Haute Couture department store: beautiful but intimidating. A place where despite having no explicit rules of dress, always seem to make me feel unworthy. Speaking of which, I've always wondered what it felt like to feel so unapologetically comfortable in one's skin without a care for the world. To simply know that the world will mould itself around you, without ever having to step out of anyone's way.
They say, fake it till you make it. But how long would that faking take before one can confidently say, 'this is it'?
The constant conflict is never-ending: the ambitious side of me yearns for an exciting life of always being On. The. Go! While the other wishes for a simpler, slower pace of life. But are we really afforded that luxury in this era that is saturated with talented youths, with the benchmark for achieving 'success' getting increasingly younger?
*The waffles were devoured. Calories burned with increased shivering.
Come, walk with us.*
It is getting to a point whereby 'success' itself feels like an identity. It is the 'thing to be', whatever that is. And in this relentless pursuit, I find myself increasingly lost in this sea of voices and prompts. In society, even on Instagram, this pressure to define myself. But how does one define oneself when one is still in that process of finding said identity?
People have such multi-faceted personalities. And all we can see on social media is but the tip of the iceberg. The depth of a person's achievements, the challenges to achieving said 'success', and the sacrifices made to get there all remain invisible to the public eye. And all I can consume are the beautiful results of these hard-won battles.
Getting served so many images in a day, I realised that I am constantly pursuing someone else's footsteps. Like there is some kind of rule to follow in everything I do : from photography to writing to school. But if everybody has such a different path to walk, I guess the question is, why am I in constant pursuit of this particular image of success that I have been served?
Damn, what WAS in those waffles? But they were really good though and so was the coffee. That said, if you are ever visiting London, I really recommend this cafe.
PS. Try the berries waffles and the lobster one!
Thank you for reading!