Archive: September 18th, 2005

Small world of pastry

I first met Cindy Li in Austin at South by Southwest. When she later visited England, she stayed over at Chez J&J in Brighton.

Now, Cindy lives in Washington DC (working at AOL) but her family live in Jacksonville, Florida. Jacksonville is close to Saint Augustine where Jessica’s family have their beach house. Naturally, Jessica inquired as to whether Cindy ever made it down to Saint Augustine. Indeed she had, back in her school days. The main reason for visiting Saint Augustine was to go to a French pastry shop where wonderful delights, like a cream-puff swan, were served up.

As it turned out, the French pastry shop was very well known to Jessica’s family. In fact, the Belgian owners of the shop (Guy and Christine Denoel) are old friends of the Spenglers.

So there we were in England, all discussing the cream-puff swans from a little pastry shop in a North Florida town. It was an obtuse but somehow fitting point of connection.

Fast forward to last month. Jessica and I are preparing for our holiday in Saint Augustine. Whilst IMing with Cindy, I find out that she was thinking of visiting the folks in Jacksonville at the same time. Plans are drawn up and a rendez-vous is arranged.

Jessica and I met Cindy’s cousin (and her adorable little daughter) and Cindy met all of Jessica’s family. Together, we went to the French pastry shop and indulged in napoleons, eclairs and of course, a cream-puff swan.

A smiling Cindy holds up a pastry swan