As summer creeps in I am meeting more and more tourists who are either pleased or surprised that I am still here. It always makes me smile that people don’t know me well enough to know that I am not a quitter, they all think that there was another way out.
I like to think that you guys know that I am made of stronger stuff, I was never built to fail. My devotion to the task at hand has got me through my career and has helped build the Plough into the pub she is now, it has also destroyed many aspects of my life and aged me immeasurably but hey it is who I am. I was once told, by a company director, that there were dogs with bones queuing up to learn tenacity from an expert. quite simply, in the absence of skill or talent, I hang on better than anyone and fight my corner without a break.
One of today’s conversations revolved around the need for “3 or 4 holidays a year” and matey couldn’t see how that was not a basic need. I explained that I have been no further than the old village in 18 months and he was concerned for my mental health, another one that doesn’t understand the machine that is Gav.
In another chat over the weekend somebody was aghast that I could be single (hey they were drunk) and I had to explain… I am a stubborn, single-minded man who has, by all accounts, rescued and changed the fortunes of this old lady that is not ‘day job’. This is not something you do ‘on the side’ this is an all-consuming passion that spares nobody, the Plough is my vampire slowly draining life from me.
Anyway enough of that I have a rant to share…. My live music on Sunday afternoon was not accepted by all, somebody was not happy. So I am in a high street pub and as such I have neighbours, not one of whom lives in a property as old as the Plough. My recent (less than a year) neighbours took my live music so badly that they felt the need to ring me and complain. Apparently the ‘intolerable’ noise level had left them locked in their home unable to open a window or door for respite.
To put this in perspective, I checked my external noise level (the doors were open) and it was certainly no louder than the local con club is at eleven o’clock on a Saturday (let me remind you this was a Sunday afternoon). In fact the pub was much quieter than the sound system in many of the cars queuing in the street in the summer or the noise from some of the flats as I walk along the street.
Obviously I am (compelled to be) a ‘good neighbour’ and shut the new double glazed doors, after all its better for a packed pub to sweat than two miserable pr*cks over the road isn’t it? Can you tell I am a little annoyed? You moved opposite a town centre pub what did you actually expect? Better than that they actually complimented me on the work that I am doing on the pub and how good it looks. Think about this for a moment, how do they think that this is funded? do they seriously imagine Bob with his crossword and pipe is funding massive renovations? The sweaty, sticky lunacy of Sunday is what pays my bills in short it is what I do for a living.
I hope they manage to bring in ‘agent of change’ and when they do I will turn up with a wreath made out as ‘f*ck you’ and lay it on their drive. Even as a punter these people sicken me, they never use a pub but like that it’s not flats. They love that a local pub adds value to their home but feel put out if it interferes with their life. I am a real pub I live in the real world, we party, we argue, we are society get bloody used to it!
If these halfwits had checked the public register with licensing they would have found I can have live music until midnight 7 days a week. If they had looked over the road we weren’t even double glazed when they purchased. A look over the road would also have confirmed that I trade one of two bars, I am entitled to trade two. We are not a bad neighbour, we work tirelessly to improve the standing of the Plough but we are a pub not a church, people come here to have fun. If you can’t stand a little noise bleed on a hot Sunday afternoon do not buy opposite a pub!
Pubs are a wicked existence that few are insane enough to suffer. In three and a half years I have never gone to bed on the same day as the one that I woke up in, think about that for a bit. If these morons want to live here then they need to get used to, and be bloody grateful for, our ways.
Always nice to leave on a positive note though so here goes. On Saturday I got a random call from our Lucy (my first barmaid), for whatever reason she found herself homeless and upset on the island and homed in on the Plough. Ignore the talk of money, the way the pub is or building improvements they are not so important it is plough family that is important. Being a port of call for my 20 year old ex barmaid in times of trouble is touching, I love my Plough family.
Being quizzed about the current staff by a girl who hasn’t worked for me in two years and having my product choices questioned by said panda eyed girl is what makes me proud. Working at the Plough doesn’t make you family, there is no fast track adoption process, some are family and they will always be that is just how it is. It is a tradition started by Shorty at the Ship and carried on by Nick, Lucy and Ellie the Plough family. Neither me nor the Plough could be prouder or more grateful for the family we have and the Plough stands as testament to each of you, every #plough or cabbage patch moment that we share makes me immensely proud of the thing that WE are building, thank you team Plough.