London is the place to be this year. Seriously, it’s all happening here. This long weekend marks the celebration of our Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and as the Queen makes her way around, her subjects have been embracing every second. I don’t think there’s a street in London without a little bunting. If you follow my Facebook page, you will have seen that it was a mere 11°C (52ºF) yesterday and I was debating whether to stay home or not, because that sure isn’t picnic weather! Not wanting to let Queenie down, I packed a bottle of bubbly and headed across the river. I have never seen so many people! London came alive! My darling friend Lasca made sandwiches of ham & relish and smoked salmon and the quintessential British summer treat – strawberries and cream. I’d love to tell you that I baked but time wasn’t on my side, so we have Marks & Spencer to thank for these Jubilee fairy cakes.
The Piccadilly Big Jubilee Lunch saw the entire street taken over by pedestrians, joyfully embracing the cold. When will I ever get to sit in the middle of Piccadilly with great company, champagne and strawberries without the risk of being run over again? Never. For me, it was a moment of pure happiness. A defining moment of the London I know and love. We sat surrounded by a sweet Chinese couple posing for wedding photographs, a delightful British-Muslim family who shared their Indian sweets (one of my favourite things) with us, a bunch of Australians stereotypically drinking Fosters and randomly being filmed by Canadian television, Londoners sipping champagne from the Fortnum & Mason bar and people who couldn’t even speak English enjoying the festivities. This is London, and I love it! Obviously, we had to represent Jamaica at the celebration – you can’t beat a bit of rum! Naturally, it rained. We got soaked. We laughed. It was just that sort of day. Waterstones’ second floor offered us refuge amongst books of Boucheron (jewel lust in full swing) and Manolo Blahnik. We ended the day with Mass at Westminster Cathedral. A Sunday to remember.
No matter what you think of the British Monarchy, this weekend has brought a diverse bunch of people together and that can only be a great thing for this country, and I for one feel very proud to be here and be a part of it all.