Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Hazel and Gingersnaps

I met my friend Hazel for coffee the other day in Tynemouth, at the Land of Green Ginger.  Well, it used to be called that and I still think of it that way - apparently it is now the 'Green Ginger Arcade'.  Anyhow, it was built in 1869 as a Congregationalist church.  Now it is a mini-shopping mall, with beautiful arches and stained glass windows.   You can see the steeple in this photo, there beyond the village green.

Also a very dangerous place for me.   The cafe where we met, Gingersnaps, is full of wonderful fattening food.  There are a number of vintage shops with things like old bevelled  mirrors, nightstand lamps, fur coats (for less than £50) and  leather gloves. 

Another place specialises in all things Celtic, which is very like art nouveau style and so I've always been quite susceptible.  Best not to go in there, you see. 

There is a sweets shop which is lovely to look at, but to which I'm largely immune. 

Another shop specialises in cake making supplies.  I'm not bothered about cakes either, but they have a display of ribbons that makes me itch to buy some major yardage.  I have to remind myself that I already have boxes of the stuff at home.

The most lethal of the shops are downstairs:  a shop called A Passion for Shoes unfortunately carries size 3 (that's about a 5 1/2 in American).  I've yet to succumb, but there will come a day I'm sure.  The really awful place is the antiques shop.

I bought my wardrobe there years ago (must show it to you sometime, it's quaint) and I've never gone in that I didn't see something I wouldn't love:  standard lamps, chandeliers, mirrors and secretaries from the 1920s.  Really bad news, that place is, for someone who already has a house full.  I have however made a list of things in my house I could bear to part with, just a few.  That would be my reward, wouldn't it, to go shopping for new things - I mean old things - in the Land of Green Ginger?

It was good to see Hazel.  We spent a good couple of hours sat on the couches there at the back, sipping tea and munching fruit cake.  The cafe was lovely and quiet.  I was thinking I might have to go back sometime and enjoy having it practically all to myself.  If a church can't be a church anymore, at least it can still be a very pleasant place.


Anna at the Doll House said...

Hello Shelly
"The Land of Green Ginger" is one of those magical-sounding names that memory will always keep safe, at least it has for me even though I have never been there. I can't imagine why anyone should want to change it to the "Green Ginger Arcade" which sounds so ordinary. Especially, as it is clearly not ordinary. It is just the sort of place that would draw me in.

Is this where you bought those lovely decanters in your previous post? I have a thing about decanters and specially admire your first two.

Thank you so much for your visits. Your comments mean so much to me.

Merry Christmas

Boywilli said...

I think that they had to change the name because of confusion with Beverley Street in Hull. The Land of Green Ginger was the only attractive part of the City. I remember running through there in the morning before breakfast and thinking about tall ships sailing back from exotic places full of tea and spices

Shelley said...

@Anna - Bill's comment explains the name change; it belonged first to a place in Hull apparently. The decanters came from Tynemouth Flea Market -

Anonymous said...

I have chronic back pain, walking makes it even worse and bores me rigid!
I'm heading out for ribbon today, do you love V V Rouleaux as much as I do? Alas I'm not creative enough to make much from their exquisite offerings.