I've probably mentioned this before, but I Love Green Lanes. It's still relatively independent, and reminds me of when I first moved to London. I can't think back to that time (one of internet cafes, The Ghetto, picking up old men on the N29 bendy bus) without sentimentalising the carefree abandon with which I launched myself on this city. I was undoubtedly a terrible housemate and contracted scabies within my first week of being here, but that's for another blog. Those days are long gone and I now know these streets and call them a home of sorts. For some reason I've never ventured into this particular cafe before, despite it sticking around the area as long as I have.
It's as bright and yellow as it's namesake, with old photos of historic London on one wall jarring with the crappy Spirograph-meets-Kandinsky-via-4-year-old mural on the opposing wall. What it lacks in cosy friendliness, it makes up in carefree cleanliness. No one seems to (openly) mind that I kick off my sweaty trainers and wander around barefoot.
Now, there is an art to a decent blended iced coffee, the first trick being that it should contain ACTUAL COFFEE. There is a trend for these easy to make powdered monstrosities that are basically a fuckload of sugar and coffee essence. That said, they are made with ice and anything that cold tastes great on a hot day, but you can't beat a real iced coffee. Cafe Lemon have not mastered this trick yet. They have mastered the Green Lanes art of making any wrap/salad/meal look amazing by simply loading the plate with whatever salads or dips are lying around that day. Music-wise they're one of the few places not to have a radio, but rather old fashioned cds. Dull American pop songs come to an abrupt end and the silence if filled by the sound of someone counting out coppers. I wonder if I'm mean to leave, though it's not even half four.