Back in Aberdeen, via the hospital and every possible bus stop in the western suburbs, I pondered three things over flat whites in the Archibald Simpson.
a) I would never have another beer, ever.
b) It was my own fault.
c) I couldn’t just sit in Wetherspoons nursing a coffee for five hours till Mrs RM finished her assignment.
I could have watched any film for a fiver at Vue, but I don’t like subtitled films. So I went and had some sushi in the indoor market.
They were fantastic folk in the Sushi Box, clearly recognising someone in a delicate state who didn’t need Coldplay being played, or asked a series of complex questions.
This is Gyndon Dunburi (I think, anyway), picked solely because
the last customer had it why not ?
They also had weird looking drinks that I assume came from an offshoot of BrewDog that makes craft beer,
but I stuck with green tea.
Eagle-eyed devotees may have noted I was one down on the Aberdeen GBG entries, assuming they know what I’d already ticked. I assume the Chinese Government do, since I use a Huawei. There’s probably a clip of me attempting to use chopsticks on YouTube by now.
One last pub.
I’d steeled myself for a last half of the trip in Aitchies Ale House. Actually, it had been closed for renovation on Tuesday and Wednesday, and I did wonder if they’d let me down badly on the Thursday as well when I saw the painter at the window.
But Aitchie’s keeps its promises, opening despite a bit of late touching-up, and was heaving.
But…..our barman couldn’t reach the handpump to dispense a half of Orkney because of the paintwork. This would be the most improbable reason not to get a beer in ticking history.
“Can you come back later.” Or you can have Tennents, I guess.
So I visited the Marine Museum (excellent) and admired a model of a micro pub being built on a North Sea rig to replace revenue lost when the oil fields dry up.
At 3.15 I tried Aitchies again. This time, the Orkney Dark Island spluttered out.
It’s no architectural classic, but it is a great boozer in the Alan Winfield/Beer Mat mould, welcoming and cosy.
I was lucky to grab the last table, right under Eddie Jones, who was no doubt claiming England could nick a point against the all-conquering Scots or something.
Very blokey, very boozy, very boisterous. But utterly civilised.
70% Tennents, 10% Stella, and I didn’t see the Orkney handpump used again. But my half was still GBG standard (NBSS 3 +).
In some ways, a microcosm of the city’s pubs. Pubs > Beer. Just as it should be.