“Look at his face ! Just look at his face !”
And this was before the Radio Solent superstardom.
Wednesday in East Dorset, and BRAPA taxi time. I get to see the impact of six pints on the human body, and tick some pubs by drinking pineapple juice and the dregs at the bottom of Si’s glass.
Our adventure starts at 11am at Wimborne Minster.
Or more accurately, Wimborne Minster Waitrose, where I parked up and hoped Si would be there before the half hour (40p !, but refunded in-store) ticket expired.
Some ten minute tourism for you.
With 29 minutes gone, there was no sign on the footpath over the river from the town, but then he crept up behind me shouting “Hellooo“, with some bizarre story about a horse and cart that no doubt you’ll here about from him later.
It took ten minutes to load his pub snacks in the car, but we still wove our way to Gussage All Saints (pop.192) by 11.40am, keen to maximise a variety of opening hours. The Drovers is just down the road from my annual music festival at Larmer Gardens, as I must have told Simon at least 7 times.
Nice church. 14th century, said Martin the Owl, probably.
The nice Sat Nav lady, who Si shares with me and Mrs RM, told us to press ahead up the track.
How exciting, like doing the Tandle Hill Tavern but without the Oldham accents.
We went past the point Mrs RM would have allowed me to go, parked up, and walked up Harley Lane for a bit before hitting the gate.
“Do a U-turn” screamed Sat Nav lady. Foe goodness sake Si, they’ve even marked PH on the map !
In consequence, it was 11.51 by the time we were first into the Drovers, a community-owned pub of the “Now we can have a proper gastropub/restaurant in the village” variety.
Rather spartan, it was fulfilling a critical role in the dispense of £8.95 sandwiches. I told Si to keep his cheese dippers out of view.
Still, nothing could dampen the BRAPA enthusiasm for a pub tick that looked a logistical challenge. The lanes were so narrow we won’t be coming here in our motorhome in August either.
Lovely friendly staff, a feature of Dorset.
Four beers, three too many. Si had the local 6d Best, the hero of the day.
I has a sip, seemed OK, and pretended my pineapple was London DIPA murk. Ha, how we laughed.
Presumably Si has recorded some interesting mannerisms by observing the gentlefolk diners for 27.5 minutes. I only had eyes for the activity packs.
By 12.15 we were being looked at with suspicion. Why hadn’t we ordered food ? Should the police be called ?
Not sure who coloured in his Beer Guide, but it was time to run.