Hidden Gems in My Hometown: Spalding, England

I was sat at home one day, this dreary January day, trying to be positive about how not going out will mean more savings and therefore less panic about our plans probably, definitely, blowing up in our faces. But I was struggling, I had nothing to write about.


I realised that my hygiene had dropped so low it was unbearable even for myself. I had stopped showering on days where I didn’t leave the house and my razor blades were (and still are) so rusty that I’d given up shaving my cactus legs altogether. It’s a sad state of affairs. I’d have painted my nails if I had nails to paint but through sheer boredom (and obvs nothing to do with my lifelong habit) I had bitten them all down to my knuckles. I don’t own a hairbrush anymore, plucking my eyebrows is too painful and I was all out of foundation and concealer. I was a ball of self-pity. I work to save and I save to… well.. not spend, yet at least.

I had no style at all. I was (probably still am) Plain Jane Zoe, with my battered owl house pants on and an ill fitting Yoda t-shirt (thanks Mike). And there’s nothing I could do about it.

I was wrong.

I got my girlfriends together, I threw caution to the wind, and I headed to town. I scraped my tangled hair into a bun, braved it with no make-up and threw on my big yellow coat (which annoyingly attracted the attention of everybody in town). We had a choice, visit our favourite haunts of The Loft (a small upstairs cafe) or try the new Maple Leaf (another cutesy cafe). We opted for the latter and it was JUST the lift I needed.

Why hadn’t I been here before? A beautiful little staircase lead upstairs to a little sofa area in, what seemed to be decked out as, a minimalist and stylish forest. I was very happy here.

Next we looked at the menu, I was dreading the costs in such an attractive place but I was pleasantly surprised to find that it was very reasonable. Better yet, they sold bottles of wine, beer, homemade milkshakes, hot chocolates and on Wednesday’s… 2 meals for £10!

We happily chatted away, I told them of our plans to leave in May and then continued a long conversation about when we were coming home (ahem, never…). I broke up my £1 Coca-Cola beverage by taking a few photos.

It was only then that I realised the best part about the Maple Leaf. It was this… this view. It doesn’t look like much, but I love seeing things in a new way and I have never seen Spalding from up high, so I was very excited.

What’s your favourite place for a drink? Let me know underneath, maybe we’ll meet up there one day!
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