Sunday took me back to Manchester, where City have resumed playing more traditional kick-off times after a brief failed experiment with 3pm on Saturday.
A 2pm start gave me time for one new GBG tick before Everton, and perhaps a couple after if Mrs RM didn’t want me back home putting up Christmas decorations (wisely, she didn’t).
I walked from Piccadilly Station, under the Mancunian Way,
Now, despite being a Proper Plastic Manc, I’ll confess I wasn’t quite sure what Hulme was. I’ve never heard anyone refer to it, and until this year it hadn’t graced the GBG, which is what counts.
Just south of Manchester Central, it looked like this in 1730 (286 years before VAR ruined football).
But that was before industrialisation, and Tony Wilson, and the reinvention of our great cities as places to entertain students.
My 20 minute walk to the Salutation takes me through the heart of University Manchester.
They’re all in bed, obviously, so I get the art trail between the Met and the Uni all to myself.
Really, you’ve Mark E Smith, Ian Curtis and Graham Gouldman to choose from and you pick lyrics from Blink 182.
Suddenly I realise where I am, yards from Sandbar which last graced the GBG under an All Saints heading.
I can’t keep up with all the changing geography, but I DO like the way the old pubs are stuck between vast new shiny buildings; it’s what Manchester does best.
I’ve done my research on the Salutation. It had just re-opened on 29 October, having been shut since March 2020, but had somehow still managed to get enough high beer scores to enter the GBG this month for the first time in my ticking lifetime. That is an amazing feat, when you think about it.
I wonder if Charlotte Bronte’s beer scores counted.
Anyway, you know what’s coming. Despite Facebook and website proudly claiming re-opening it was firmly closed, with no opening times on the door and my messages unanswered. Sadly, duff opening times info is the tickers’ lot in 2021. (Don’t worry, there’s a really happy ending).
I wondered if this pole outside the pub was dispensing equipment to allow you to break in and help yourself to Bollington Best and score it.
Never mind, there’s a great pint of Tetley at the Gamecock.
Anyway, get down there this afternoon and **** the system. NO, not the system of choosing GBG entries, silly.