I work 4 days a week so when Fridays come around, I try to do something special. Now that may mean catching up with a friend, going to a movie or sampling some of the cafes that keep on opening up in Auckland. It seems that every week there is a new café or restaurant, or two or three, on the scene. How do they all survive?
Last Friday, although strictly speaking it was last week’s Friday, not yesterday (confused?), I had such a lovely day where everything turned out just the way I’d want.
First up I headed for coffee and cake at L’Oeuf in Mt Albert. I must be one of the few who haven’t had un oeuf at L’Oeuf (an egg for those without the benefit of my school taught French), mainly because I seldom go out for breakfast or brunch – I will have had my breakfast early and by mid-morning I am more than ready for a coffee, especially after a drive into the city. Anyhow, in my book, cake and coffee go so much better than eggs and coffee (just saying…).
Do you ever get that anxious feeling when you step inside somewhere new? I do, but at L’Oeuf I was instantly made to feel genuinely welcome by the waitstaff. So much so that after all their warm attention I practically skipped out the door. Great service, guys.
I chose this delicious pear and cardamom cake, along with a latte. The waitress placed them in front of me and explained they had a new barista so if anything was not up to scratch I was to let them know (it was all perfect). Later she came by to check and to have a little chat.
Now the really annoying thing is that I used to live close to this cafe and now I don’t. I sat there wishing L’Oeuf had been around then. C’est la vie.
Moving on and a short drive to the Capitol Cinema to see Wadjda. This is a little gem of a movie about a spirited young girl (played so captivatingly by Waad Mohammed that it’s almost like watching a documentary) who comes up with some ingenuous ways to save money for a bike she covets. As we follow her daily life and attendance at a strict religious school, the film gently illustrates the restrictions of women and children in Saudi Arabia. Directed by a female Saudi Arabian, the movie explores the issues simply and effectively and in a way that leaves you with hope. My feminist hackles rose several times but I was heartened a few days later hearing a radio movie reviewer say that since the film’s release, bicycle areas had been introduced in Saudi Arabia for young girls to use (one of the problems Wadjda faced was that it wasn’t seemly for girls to ride bikes in public).
The last thing to put a smile on my face before leaving the city behind was missing all the normal Friday afternoon traffic and cruising home with no delays. Bliss.