What to call it?

Juno was always ready when food was on the agenda, delicately poised to catch any stray morsels of fish or meat…

Juno ready

But she was never easily fooled by her resident dreamer’s claim that Cardiff had a distinctly mediterranean vibe…

Corner House [2]

For all of the outdoor eating when the sun was shining, Juno was quite clear that Cardiff had a reputation for being the rainfall capital of the UK. She could think of no better reason for being an indoor cat. Meanwhile, us mere mortals went in search of sustenance on a sunny Sunday lunchtime…

Corner House [1]

Choice would not appear to be a problem, in the heart of a capital city centre. But discerning tastes were drifting away from dropping in on the ubiquitous chain restaurants that have come to dominate, making everywhere a carbon copy of everywhere else. Juno was a distinctly individual cat, and it was the legacy of her spirit that drove the food enthusiasts on in their search for a unique port of call. The question is, what might it be called amongst the sea of familiarity?

Corner House [3]

Wine stocksThe Brewery Quarter has a certain liquidity about it, but Juno’s discerning tastes were more towards the vineyard than the brewery…

Still the question remained, would we know the place of supreme individuality when we saw it?

Caroline Street

Caroline Street has achieved a certain world renown as ‘Chip Alley‘ for its succession of good old fashioned ‘chippies’, but we were not in the mood for a bag of chips and curry sauce while strolling by the somewhat more sophisticated diners (i.e. people sitting on chairs).

Perhaps if we looked to the corner of Caroline Street we might just find a source of inspiration…

Corner House [4]

Anyway, while we pondered what you might actually call a unique eatery with a prominent location, we decided that searching should give way to eating. It might have been a sunny Sunday, but that is no excuse for missing out on a Sunday roast of beef. And maybe a nod to Mediterranean culture with a bottle of fine Spanish Rioja

Corner House [5]

Once refreshment was complete we were able to go back to the challenge of thinking what you might call a house on the corner of Caroline Street if you were projecting your distinctiveness in the sea of chains!

BatmanAs for Juno, she would no doubt have been keeping watchful eyes on the idiots she was attempting to mentor! Until we speak again, if you find a Corner House it probably does what it says on the tin.

Dealing in fractions

I often like to do some silly impressions just to pass the time of day, and as a means of expressing my considerable talents. Here is one of me in a ‘Half Cat Half Rabbit’ moment:

Half cat half rabbit

It got me thinking that there is plenty about what I see around Cardiff that falls into various halves and quarters, and here are just a few reflections to share with you. Firstly, I was somewhat dismissive when my personal claw clipper came back from a Council meeting telling me that we live in an area of the city that has a below average crime rate. After all this is the edge of the city centre, in the south of the city that was the old docklands. I remember living in the old docklands in East London, and I wouldn’t say that these areas are noted for domestic open-door policies, if you know what I mean. But I can see how crime rates are so low in Cardiff, largely because the criminals are so obvious to spot… here we see ‘Half Swan Half Burglar’ going about their trade:

Swan burglary

Doing things by halves isn’t necessarily going to get you anywhere, particularly if you are a dumb animal. Why not at least try under the cover of darkness?

Then as I stroll around the neighbourhood I feel sorry for some of the buildings… here is ‘Half Building Half Dream’, as I imagine this shabby excuse for a pile of glass and concrete thinking ‘when I grow up I want to be like that picture’. You didn’t know buildings have feelings?

Buildings dream [1]

Now, the Shard in London, that’s a dream…

The Shard June 2012

Enough of these halves, it turns out that Cardiff is really a city of quarters… from the previous dreaming building I can see there might one day be a Capital Quarter, to go alongside the Brewery Quarter, Castle Quarter and Morgan Quarter:

Buildings dream [3]

Brewery Quarter

Castle QuarterMorgan Quarter





Just to mess with your mind a little, I thought I would throw in a fifth quarter… the Blue Sky Quarter (complete with Welsh flags at the entrance) just to stimulate your own thinking, put in any quarter you like (that probably means something different to our American readers):

Blue sky quarter

Anyway, all this strolling around the city and thinking in numbers eventually gets to a cat, so I am off back to my own quarters. See you again soon. Juno