Tuesday, 29 March 2011


Over supper last week with friends, we all came to the conclusion that the weekends are becoming rather repetitive… going out and doing averagely fun things and then spending Saturday and Sunday getting up way too late, and, therefore doing very little. This resulted in a decision to go canal boating in July… more of that another time.

We are going to have weekends like this for circa the next TEN YEARS, before we start visiting friends with babies, going to weddings and taking mini breaks to European cities. My problem with this is how to make the most of them, how to make them different, and how to make my stubborn and resistant boyfriend do anything that isn’t sitting at home watching football on a Saturday afternoon. The answer… The Goat Race.

Ah – you think there is a typo – of course I mean The Boat Race where you sit in a pub, can’t get a table, actually don’t see one man in lycra and frankly don’t give a flip about who wins… I really don’t – I mean Goat…

The Goat Race is exactly how it sounds. One goat called Oxford, one called Cambridge – and they race. This all took place at an inner-city farm just off Brick Lane. All afternoon there was music, stalls, and loads of farm animals to play with. We killed two birds with one stone and saw some friends who have moved East and now never come west. After trying to be trendy, ride a Boris bike and eat a curry from one of those stalls, we scooped up our suitably trendy East friends and headed over to Spitalfields farm. First there was a stoat race – where cute little ferrets raced through a tube. It’s sort of cruel but hysterical. And then the actual goat race. To be honest, the race itself was a let down. Just like the boat race, we had to fight our way to the front, and we only saw the goats for a fleeting second.

BUT the whole afternoon was good fun and has made me think about the use of my weekends – which when I am graced with the absence of work, are very precious.

My friend (who incidentally NEVER wastes the weekend being idle) found this in TimeOut – so yuppies of west London take note... being a dickhead might actually be cool.

Emily Vaughan-Barratt

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