As it turns out the train gods were on our side and at every part of our journey a train pulled into the platform just as we arrived. This meant we got to Hampstead Heath somewhat earlier than expected and as it was raining steadily and a bit chilly to just stand around waiting we went for a little explore.
Now I will confess that I have foolishly just assumed all these years that Hampstead Heath was exactly that, a heath, an open space of gorse, grass and heather......doh.
Anyway it was a delightful surprise to find lots and lots of trees and vegetation. I grew up next to a forest and if nothing else this day out reminded me how much I loved it and that I must make an effort to get back out into the woods more often.
So on to the forage, there were about 20 of us in the group and Andy the guy running it was brilliant. As it turns out you are no longer allowed to forage on Hampstead Heath this meant only Andy was allowed to gather anything we found there. Luckily this was not the case on the Kenwood Estate which is English Heritage so our forage took in a large area of their grounds.
Towards the end of the forage nature was calling me very, very loudly. Thankfully Andy's wife was on hand and gathering that the ladies of the group would really rather not squat behind a bush suggested a slight detour that took in a public convenience, bless her heart.
It truly was a fantastic day out despite the weather and I would highly recommend it, I now know some delicious edible and some extremely non edible fungi.
By the end however I was more than ready for a cup of tea. So on the advice of Margaret at Penny Dreadful Vintage we sought out Louis Patisserie.
We decided to visit Keats House as we were in Hampstead and thoroughly enjoyed staring at all the huge houses on the way there, playing 'if money were no object' and chosing which one we would buy.
After that we mooched around looking at the shops for a while but to be honest we were both feeling pretty cold and damp at this point so we headed for home where I had a lovely hot shower and an intravenous drip of tea to top up my depleted levels.
As the evening went on the weather started to kick off big style and I crawled into bed to the sounds of howling wind and rain pounding the window.