I'm off on my tour in less than 2 weeks (April 10th) and I have started to be mauled by the Night Hound. Lying there in the dead of night with the one thought my head revolving round my chalky mind: What-the-hell-are-you-doing-? But then I get up and feel much braver. I need to feel scared and out of my depth, it's a prerequisite of feeling alive and purposeful. When I break it all down it's pretty straightforward - I need to rely on the gift of the gab and on people's love of chocolate to get me through 3 months on the road in the choc-mobile.
I have had some really exciting offers of supper/a bed for the night/a plug-in for Jimmy. There's a guy called Alex right in the middle of England who puts together these legendary sounding BBQs - we're going to make a marinade using Willie's chocolate. Then there's Eddie up in Inverness who sold me Jimmy in the first place. He wants us to both set up at his Saturday pitch and go head to head in competition with each other - soft scoop V hard scoop, the ultimate scoop-off!
I have supper to look forward to in Whitstable, Hastings, Chichester, Hayward's Heath, Oxford, Maidenhead....to name just a few - and I'm leaving plenty of days open to chance. The logistics of it all is a bit daunting but then so is starting a business and you soon learn that some things can't be planned properly, and you come to trust that you'll have the nouse to figure certain things out as you go along (hopefully).
I went for dinner last night with some new friends in my manor. Giuseppe and Bridget are a power house of tasty morsels and treats. He is the owner of the wonderful Black's on Dean St and they've just opened this great pizza place in Brixton market. Imagine this - a place that just does amazing pizzas, Napule-style. They're making their own sourdough (real deal, without yeast unlike other pretenders) and simple all organic sauces, homemade lemonade, one red wine, one white and proper Italian beer. No messing, good prices and in my hood! We ate so well with them - endless grilled pieces of deliciousness kept arriving on my plate: halloumi, fresh bread, homemade taramasalata, banana peppers, succulent lamb chops with tzatziki, crunchy roasted rosemary tats...and then I felt very honoured when Bridget produced some homemade chocolate sorbet she'd made especially for me. It's such a refreshing dessert - pitch black and looking all naughty, but light and clean amongst the darkness.
Thanks for all the suggestions and do keep them coming!