The award for cutest name goes too Blossoming Together. They’ve only been open a handful of months, so I am told, and they’re still getting going. But this lack of refinement makes the whole thing better, possesing a reality that most places don’t have. They hail from Italy, and slot comfortably into this quiet pedestrianised road opposite Deptford High Street.
When I walked past and took a look in it felt like I was peering into someone’s front room. A woman appeared, somewhat expectantly, somewhat suspiciously, with a cautious smile on her face. I went in and asked for a coffee. She seemed slightly thrown, as if I had asked for something unusual, like a rabbit or something. But, quickly she seemed to accept that this was indeed a café and coffees were a fairly ordinary request. First, she fumbles around finding me a suitable place to sit. It’s not busy, so this shouldn’t be too challenging. But, also, there’s only a few tables. There’s one woman reading at one table, and a young girl with toys at another. I join the woman, she with Kindle, me with paperback. The three of us briefly discuss the merits of each device and the prospects for the rainforest.
There’s also a space downstairs. From the amount of noise I deduce that downstairs is bigger than up here. Hold on – that’s the indisputable sound of a sewing and colouring and braiding workshop, and it sounds like it’s going well. This community-oriented project seems to be a principle theme for the café, and I think that’s good. Although, I might add, I’m fairly indifferent to sewing.
There’s no ‘counter’ as such in here. A sort of small table/cupboard loosely demarcates the bit of the room where coffees are made and cakes are sliced. The sides and walls are lined with ingredients. It’s like when you go to someone’s house and you see how much better their kitchen is than yours. But this is a comfortable kitchen to be in, easy on the eyes and bursting with culinary potential.
Our Italian hostess, after marveling at the brilliance of Deptford market for things such as prawns, soon runs out the door leaving her one available employee, only just recruited, to keep things in order. This was fine until the Kindle Woman wanted to pay for her drink. The till loomed like an unfathomable corrupted robot, teasing her with booby-trapped buttons that do who-knows-what. I came to the rescue with my paltry knowledge of rudimentary cash registers and between the three of us we managed to get £2 into it. Soon after, the hostess returns showing off a bag of prawns. I pay for my drink, promise to return to tell her about my studies, and head home.