As I relaxed this evening, after my 17 hr shift, I took to old forums to catch up on how my previous projects are running. Firstly I should take this opportunity to say a well done to the boys and girls that are bringing many years of hard graft to life in the excellent 345 it is great to see the cream rising to the top once again, keep it up.
The internet got me a wandering in the way that it does and before I knew it I was looking at some of the huge infrastructure projects that I have been part of over the years. I looked at the new roof garden being installed at Canary Wharf and happened upon ‘pre-public’ videos of the latest addition to a site that I remember being born and have spent months of my life in meetings at.
Those of you who read my ramblings may recall that I have a fascination with restricted access areas and even empty public areas. I have always loved being somewhere the public cannot be or even somewhere they can at a time that they cannot. There is something about jumping off a train platform, wandering a tunnel or opening that ‘no entry’ door that has always given me a smile, after all I can do something that you can’t.
I still get a smile when I walk through the closed pub. The smell of stale beer is a nectar to me and the fact that I get to smell that with my morning cup of tea remains a privilege because that is what I do while you are off doing normal things in the real world. Anyway, having watched these videos, I was once again struck by the fact that I no longer operate in a world where things are measured in millions of pounds or hundreds of tonnes, that world really is behind me.
I thank Robbo for occasional updates and thoroughly enjoy recollecting the insanity of first in class testing (please don’t stop) but it is viewed from a distance now. So where does this leave me? It leaves me where I am meant to be, in a fantastic pub surrounded by great people.
It was great today to see two tourists who were last here in October 2015. Repeat custom is one thing but these guys remembered meeting me (there were no other staff here then) and remembered my name. The passion that I have for this pub is that infectious that people remember it and comeback because they are part of it, could there be a better endorsement of what we are doing here?
So we had some tough days last week as we worked to manage the dichotomy that is ‘old’ and ‘new’ Plough but that is what we do. There is no ‘old’ Plough, there is the Plough and she looks after her own. Watching my lot rally around those who are having tough times is heartwarming, even for my shrunken black heart.
Again this week I have been challenged on the hours I work or the absence of a ‘life’. This is my explanation, this is the reason why (and how) I do this, quite simply it is my passion for this wonderful old pub that drives me forward. This is where the Plough is, and will always be, different for better or worse if you drink here you drink with me in my front room. There are many reasons why the television has not found its way back into my lounge after the building works but they all come down to the fact that I sleep upstairs, I live downstairs. Every second of my life is consumed by the Plough and I am so proud of what we have achieved so far as I am excited about what is to come.