After some serious effort I am now fully installed in the pub although I am currently enjoying a weekend with friends before the final move. Heartfelt thanks, as always, to Andrew who worked like a trooper alongside me as we completed various loading and unloading of the hire van.
For those that are always want to know I can say that there is still not excitement as such. There is some trepidation and, of course, I will miss the people and the area that I live in, as I miss my colleagues. Mostly there is frustration with myself for not completing jobs at the rate at which I need to, I seem to be permanently chastising myself for poor performance at the moment. Moving my kit in just means that the bar looks full and untidy and that, once again, the job list is growing. I have no doubt that excitement will come and expect it to grow as opening day looms nearer.
I took the opportunity to visit Sandown for lunch during the move and it was interesting to see that Andrew was as devastated as me at the loss of Wight City, a local amusement/apartment/pub complex. It strikes me that when the government review the current ACV legislation which is supposed to protect ‘Assets of Community Value’ they wouldn’t go far wrong making funds available to people like us who fall in love with these old rough diamonds.
The stonemason explained that there was some delay installing quoins due to a void discovered behind one which he just couldn’t understand. Those that have ever been involved in a pub will appreciate that my answer was that it’s a pub, that one line acts a catch-all answer. It is nice to see some of the new stone going in and I also managed to remove the planters to make way for the new windbreaks which I have yet to arrange. I have yet to see the sign-writer who is now on the chase list for next week as I want to see the Plough & Barleycorn name back where it belongs. The plumber is set for Tuesday so it wont be long before I have some civility in the residential accommodation although there is the question as to why the shower/bath drains so slowly still to address.
The pub for her part continues to drive interest on both islands and, in so doing, reminds me that it is all on me to enable her and provide what is needed to let her trade successfully. Regardless of excitement I remain convinced that this was the right decision.
Well what a weekend! This was the first weekend that I have visited the pub on my own and also the first that I haven’t used a bed & breakfast, the last part of that sentence made me wince by the way. It is hard to say that I made good progress because I have an annoying habit of switching tasks making it difficult to close individual tasks down.
Beer lines were sorted and 6 yards of waste hand balled into a skip so that is a task completed I guess. Turning the water on, with the intention of washing away the stench of 6 month old Guinness*, presented a new challenge though as the abandoned car had been rolled forward and now covered my water meter. The roads team have assured me that it is the council’s job to remove the car and, for their part, the council seem equally convinced that it is not. In the end I reached the police who told me that there is no registered keeper on the system. After some debate over whether it was in fact possible to simply rescind ownership of a vehicle a couple of policemen arrived and gave me a push to get it clear of the water meter.
Another of this week’s tasks now will be to pester all of the authorities again with a view to disposing of this vehicle which has been there for months. A good conversation was had with the stonemason and the sign writer which leaves me with some confidence that I can achieve my new deadlines which are to go full time end of June and open end of July. The plan is punishing but if I am not trading in August I run the risk that everything pushes out to next summer and I really don’t want that. Drop dead for notice to work is end of May, only about 6 weeks away! Oddly we can thank Jo for the date as I had managed to slip that detail in my own planning and only set it out when she challenged me.
More wiring was stripped this weekend, locks changed and, as always, more cleaning. The phone line is now active after BT sorted a crossed line and I resolved yet another flood. The latest flood is one of those very ‘pub’ stories. Previously I have had no trouble with the gents, indeed it has been the toilet of choice, I have even witnessed the urinals flush (a strange claim to fame). This weekend though I turned the water on and had taken a call before I heard the ominous sound of rushing water. Racing into the gents I was met with a rain forest as the urinal feed bounced off the ceiling.
After recovering the situation, and finishing my call, I investigated the cistern and discovered that there was no float it was simply left to fill very slowly and then gravity flush. What had caused the water loss was that the service valve was now fully open. This is not a service valve that anybody has touched, indeed it was rather tight, but it couldn’t have been fully open before or we would have had the flood!
A working day that started at 5am (a ‘benefit’ of no bedding) and ended at 1am, shattered, filthy and bruised. If anybody thinks that would be enough to put me off then you don’t know me! I still very much love my little pub on my gorgeous little island.
*other rotten beer products were also involved