Bobby my son-in-law is always asking me to make him a pie. I’ve had strict instructions not to make him any more though, because of the weight issue. I’ve been making this as far back as I can remember. I don’t actually remember not making it, but it is a bit of an East London dish.
The area’s been home for so many years now. We lived in Stepney Green when I was a girl and I went to a Jewish school. I actually used to swim for the Stepney Jewish Girls Club. I don’t know how that happened. I even learnt Hebrew.
East London has changed so much though. Broadway Market is disgusting. Gentrification has gone over the top. The locals are all being pushed out and all of a sudden these blocks are becoming luxury areas and no one is stopping it. There’s been a 100% increase on my building now. I’ve no idea where my framing business is going to go. I’m completely blank. It’s such a self-destructive thing that’s happening to London. It isn’t sustainable. It’s so sad.
I’ve been a framer for 25 years now. Before that I had my own recruitment firm. I hadn’t had any training. I just worked as an interviewer for an employment agency and one day I thought to myself, ‘I can do this.’ I had so many contacts, so I took them all with me. Then, when I had the recruitment firm, I saw the guy next to my office had a framing shop. It was so, so different to what I was doing behind a desk. So I learned everything there was to know about framing from scratch and then took over his business.
Oh, and I had a gallery in Belgium at one point too. I’ve crammed so much into this life of mine by doing things! I used to go backwards and forwards with a group of girls to Ostend, this mad clubbing area. It was wild there. I was once in Lille and I was so drunk (I don’t know how I ended up there). There was a puddle and I remember walking through the water with my high heels on absolutely drunk. That’s a memory of getting my feet wet. I don’t think I’ve ever done that since.
I was pretty wild. Another time I was in a bar in Ostend and I said to somebody, ‘Where’s the ladies here?’ They pointed it out, I went on through and saw a ladder. So I climbed it. I went up this ladder right up into the loft. They’d sent me up there as a joke.
It was one of these weekends that I saw the gallery in Belgium was for rent with an apartment upstairs. I thought it might be fun, so I took it on. I’d drive from London to Dover on a Friday night after work with all this art in my little maroon Mini, get on the boat and arrive in Belgium, where all the clubs would be. So of course, I’d go out at about 1am.
I do think it’s funny, as you get older you go out, meet up with the girls, do a little ladies who lunch thing, but I do realise, all we talk about is the things we used to do. It’s all hilarious, you know, like the time we lost Joan in Paris or whatever, but after you’ve done it two or three times, you think, what about now?
June's pie was made using insanely good steak from The Ginger Pig - our supporter and JUNE's favourite independent London butcher.
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