As we know J K Rowling was inspired to write Harry Potter whilst sitting in
cafes in Edinburgh. When you walk around Edinburgh you can see small stone
carved gargoyles and dragons over your head on corners of buildings. There are
narrow streets and alleyways, all fairy tale –like.
Well, firstly I must distance myself from the brilliant writing of Ms
Rowling as I am a mere person writing our travel blog.
However, inspirational sights and places come to us all.
There is a wonderful little cafe in Valletta where I am now sitting. It is
tiny about fourteen feet wide by forty feet long, the interior filled with
memorabilia on stone walls and wooden ceiling beams and tiled floor. The tiny
high legged tables run in lines along each side of the cafe are a mere two and
half by one and half feet allowing two people to just about squeeze together on
one table to eat.
And so, the seven tables are always full, usually with local Maltese
people. The cafe has an almost timeless feel about it, although the memorabilia
is of the 1930’s/ 40’s.
Harry Potter rushes along Kings Cross station on platform Nine and three
quarters to transport himself through the wall and onto the Hogwarts
This narrow cafe has the same feeling. There’s a sense that before the food
arrives you might be transported into Malta of just pre-war. On the stone
chiselled walls there is the front of a V.R post box and a memorabilia cabinet
oozing with 1930’s/40’s children's toy boxes, a model ‘Larkin and Newton Anchor
butter-biscuit lorry, packaging from 30’s/40’s daily life, sewing kits, war
–time boxes, matches etc. I guess this is the reason the cafe is called the
‘Museum Cafe’--- it is in fact no where near a museum.
I love the mix of people who come and go, children, families, elderly---
all ages and walks of life. Often clergymen, head to toe in black passing
through before returning to the many impressive churches in Valletta. The
Maltese language is a mixture of Arabic, Italian and English, it is a language
unlike all others where the strong Arabic dialect drops every other word into
Italian, English and back---adding to the mystery.
The inexpensive, simple but very good home cooked food brings about a
constant stream of traffic, to eat in and local people collecting
take-aways. Glorious lasagnes, local specialities of ftiras, salads, rice
and pasta dishes are displayed in large trays, freshly cooked every morning---
and if your too late you miss it !
The little open kitchen is at the far end of this long, narrow, tunnel-like
cafe. The staff are very friendly, calm, attentive and seem to instantly produce
lovely food. Today I arrived with a headache and was even kindly offered
headache tablets withy my coffee.........
These ‘melting’ places are great venues for travellers and locals alike, no
doubt many with stories to tell. One of the best things about our travelling has
been meeting many characters and seeing some of the interesting locations.
This cafe is one of them and we intend to enjoy it for the time we are in
Malta..............perhaps it might even transport us to somewhere ????
Love to all
Tina and Tony x x