Every year, on the Sunday and Monday of the August Bank Holiday Weekend, Notting Hill is transformed into a tropical paradise for two days. Revellers pour in from all over London to drink rum punch, eat jerk chicken, and dance their faces off. It's one of my favourite events of the year.
This year, we experienced a rare treat at carnival - sunshine!
The wonderful Amy and I started our day at a friend's party, and then worked our way up and around Portobello Road, stopping to pick up some drinks which almost certainly contained our five a day. Delicious and nutritious, and essential to counteract the baking heat (just so British - when there is finally a day of sunshine, we do like to whinge about the heat, don't we?).
Totally refreshed, and maybe suffering from sugar-rushes, we then continued hopping, skipping, and shaking around in search of my favourite sound-system, Gaz's Rockin' Blues, which I end up at every year, vowing to remember where it is for the next time...
Mission accomplished! Gaz's sets up every year outside 103 Talbot Road, and is definitely worth a visit if you enjoy a boogie-woogie to ska, jazz and New Orleans R&B. Gaz Mayall has been performing at Notting Hill Carnival for over 30 years, and I honestly have more and more fun every time I go. This year's theme is The Jungle Book, so we swung and shook overlooked by a menagerie of stuffed creatures. It really was ace.
When we were all danced out, we snuck off home to enjoy a cosy evening on the sofa, rewatching series one of Desperate Housewives and drinking Chocolat Charbonnel. Bliss.
If my poor, tired feet will allow it, then I'll be heading back to carnival tomorrow for more rum, chicken, and dancing. Hope to catch you there.
Hope that you're enjoying the Bank Holiday!