By the time I got back from Blyth on Saturday afternoon (3:55 hours) I was emotionally drained.
Not JUST because pubs are back, or because I’d once again proved that Doom Bar is our No.1 cask beer (#FACT), but due to stumbling on this as I passed, er, Grantham Downtown.
That’s for Michael from California who visits for the ’80s alternative music references.
“Welcome home, welcome
Come on in, and close the door
You’ve been gone, too long
Welcome, you’re home once more”
Dylan or McKee never wrote anything that emotional.
Mrs RM had already walked past our nominal local to assess the “carnage” foretold on Twitter, just like the dove sent out from the Arc. She found nothing.
At 8pm I went to find out for myself.
“Martin !!” shouted two voices from the table at the front as I nervously debated which rule to break first.
It was Dortmund Annie and hipster Saimon (blogging like I’ve got friends now) out in the front with the iconic view of the green, kebab van and Chung Hwa.
They were bewildered that I was back already from my Doom Bar in Northumberland that I’d only blogged about that lunchtime.
Time to investigate a Proper Pub. One way, table service in the little lounge to the right, pints from the bar in the public to the left.
They’ve has opened up a strip of seating to the side to ease pressure on the bar area,
which now look refreshed, says Mrs RM.
All your favourites on the bar (pumps are in the lounge though some beers from the barrel).
Their guest craft has gone from Punk to Theakston to Lagunitas. Your opinion please.
The Sun looks the archetypal “cash pub”, so the contactless machine is almost as jarring as the handwash. Many regulars (and me) bought a voucher for the pub during Lockdown so lots of scribbling on ledgers was going on.
Despite being local, the Turpin’s Stout is sensational (NBSS 4). The sun always shines on Waterbeach, as you know already.
Didn’t touch the sides.
Annie texted Mrs RM, and to my surprise she arrived ten minutes later with James, who was just after hot nuts.
Pleasingly, it meant that I wasn’t occupying a table for
4 3 on my own.
We had more pints of Stout and Pride (drinking well) and Ghost Ship. No idea what the Youngs had done to offend us.
You’ll be disappointed to hear everyone seemed to be following the rules and STILL enjoying themselves on a night of steady trade. Steady steps.
Saimon summed it up well, though he really needs to learn not to photograph people in pubs.
The real transformation is in the Gents;
I have no idea what we talked about for an hour or so over 3 pints.
Oh, yes, Coveney. And diggers. And friendly policeman checking up on pubs.
It’s great to be back.