Tuesday 22 July 2008

Brockwell Park: Lambeth Country Fair

I must admit, I thought the idea of going to the Lambeth Country Fair was a joke. A warped joke to make us all get mugged and just drive around the destitute South Circular for a whole Sunday as a way of reminding me of the endless traffic jams that greet the hockey season.

As we drove past the entrance by mistake for the forth time we noticed a sign with Tom PB's smiley face on it praising Olley's restaurant for being one of Tom's top 5 fish and chip shops in London. At this point things started to pick up!

Tom PB Fish and Chip shop

We eventually parked and set about exploring. Any hint of dount evaporated as soon as my nose picked up that magnetic whiff of jerk chicken. Plumes of spicy smoke wafted over the park as countless stalls grilled up the same food! The first stall we visited was even using environmentally friendlt charcoal from Croydon of all places. Apparently it is much better for the environment. Or so the Observer says.

Croydon Eco Friendly Charcoal

But probably more important was the fact that they were cooking with organic chicken - Hugh your campaign is working after all!

Organic Jerk Chicken

The only draw back inevitably was the price. With only a fiver in my pocket and some shrapnel this was going to have to a Country Fair on the cheap.

But it was only a matter of moments before my eye was almost wrenched out of their sockets by the sign of all signs: Carnivorous Plants for sale.

Carnivorous plants

At last... a solution to our greenfly problem at work. Within seconds I had bought a man eating. Sorry green fly eating plant for our chilli plants. The only downside is that is has similar dietary requirements to an anaemic, celiac with a lactose intolerance and a small issue with solids. Fussy doesn't even come close!

Man eating plants

Our Wahaca chillies are going to be so pleased when the meet their new friend! And those greenfly are going to extinct.

Having shelled out most of my money on essentials such as carnivorous plants it left only a few coins for lunch. So we went for some jerk chicken from the stall with the longest queue. Apart from the dried out skin, fragments of sharp bone and questionable meat it was delicious. I sort of wish I had an extra few quid to get the organic stuff at the top of the post. But this was probably more authentic. I would have felt a bit like someone with their own VIP toilet at Glastonbury.

Jerk Chicken bbq

Aside from the man eating plants, choke worthy jerk chicken, drug deals, petting zoo and falconry demonstration the best thing was definitely the plant tent. Lots of lovely plants and then to top it all... a vegetable competition. The highlight was definitely these very impressive red onions. From now on I am always going to present my onions on disks of toilet roll tubing. Genius! This is what makes Britain great.

Red onions

As a collection of hooded black youths were frogmarched out of the fair by 12 stab proof vested policemen, a couple of queer chaps were presenting the prizes for the best vegetables in Lambeth. If you want a snapshot of Britain you could have found it in the plant tent at the Lambeth Country Fair!

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