I've had many favourite hang outs around the world in my life. There was a perfect little cafe in Florence, where I'd stop for a pastry and cappuccino on the way to my Italian language class every morning. No seats, just standing at the bar and trying to look all Italian (I think I failed miserably at that, but it was lovely just pretending). Pubs and bars in London where I hung out way too much (but oh what a lot of fun and so many stories to tell). A great bakery in Portland where they made the most delicious macarroons. A Starbucks just around the corner from home where I would wander regularly with my boy Luca when he was just two and a half for an afternoon hot chocolate. And beaches in Hawaii where I could have hung out forever and completely dropped out of 'real' life. So many places to hang out and not enough time eh!
But now my favourite hang out is close by. The 'barista' makes a great cup of tea and the excellent coffee is made "old syle" in a classic Bialetti espresso maker. The homemade banana and walnut cake is delicious (as are the fancy cakes on your birthday). The sofa and armchairs are leather and soft and comfy and you can sit (if you have nothing else to do) for hours with a book or magazine. There's usually some great music being played (favourites right now are Paolo Nutini and She & Him). Sun shines in through the French doors that lead onto a small garden (which is my favourite hang out in the summer time). Nobody minds if you've not long woken up and look a little rough around the edges - we're all family here! There's usually a big vase filled with flowers from the local market. In the daytime there are plenty of toys and books around to keep an army of kiddos happy, and in the winter evenings, when all is quiet, you can unwind on the big sofa, glass of wine in hand and candles glowing.
Welcome to my living room. The place I spend most of my time with my little family, and these days my favourite hang out.
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