Thursday, 15 October 2020

Ah, the glamour.

 Lovely comments from visitors today:

“Fabulous soup”

“May I have the recipe for that blackcurrant crumble?” 

“We’ll be fitting in as many visits as we can before you close for Winter”

Not so lovely comment:

“Just thought you should know that one of your toilets is blocked”

Wednesday, 14 October 2020

Years of learning

 A return to an old blog feature - customer of the day.

We had plenty of candidates today but one man stood out. His order came to £13.75.

“1375,” he said, “Not sure about that as a year. I like to think of something that happened in history and that’s a tricky one.” He gave it another few seconds then added, “It was the time of Edward III and the 100 years war. One of the treaties that ended the war was signed in 1375. Not very exciting, but there you go.”

I hope he comes back every day to add to my education. 

Friday, 9 October 2020

Octobervest

 We have just a few weeks left of what has been, for everyone, a very strange season. We’re aiming to close on Sunday 1st November. I say “aiming” because who knows whether we’ll be allowed to stay open that long. It’s all about the known unknowns and the unknown unknowns...

Customers have reacted very well to the changes since 4th July and have followed our guidelines. We’ve had plenty of comments about how safe they feel with the social distancing measures in place and the proof of that is that they have returned, often with other people. Plenty have signed in using the NHS app and, in the whole of the time we’ve been open, we’ve only had a handful of visitors refusing to give us contact details. More people than ever have chosen to sit outside even on the not-so-warm days.

This week has been among the most difficult I’ve faced. The weather has not been kind, which always has an impact, but it also feels as if the rise in cases across the country has also had an impact. Are more people choosing to stay at home again? This weekend will be telling. The weather forecast is mixed but mostly pretty good. We could do with some better numbers to counter some poor days this past week.

There’s still humour to be found in all this uncertainty, thank goodness. We hear tales of masks issues and steamed up glasses, parents who say they’ll happily sit apart from their children even though they’re still within the rule of six, the same comments about calories and no-sugar-thank-you-I’m-sweet-enough.

My favourite comment came from a lady who told me that she came to us because she knew it was possible to be “socially different”. 



Wednesday, 16 September 2020

Just a note

 Since we reopened we have mainly been using paper plates. Not ideal but we don’t have the space at the moment for three people to wash up so for the time being we’re trying to limit the pans, crockery, cutlery and utensils.

Today we found another benefit came from using paper plates.


Tuesday, 8 September 2020

Hearty

 Soup has returned to our menu.

We’ve made it every morning since I remembered to add bloomer bread to our delivery from the bakery and since we managed to dig out the soup pan and blender from the back of a cupboard.

No one was happier to see SOUP on a chalkboard than Peter and Janet (who come two or three times a week to tend our large garden) but their excitement was not because they wanted soup for lunch.

It was because they have an abundance of courgettes from their own garden and they know we’ll use them.

Today’s soup was courgette, celery and pea. It was very green.

Monday, 7 September 2020

Express Post


We made an appearance in the Saturday Express magazine this weekend. A lovely surprise. Yesterday I took a call from a lady who is bringing her family to this area during half term and wanted to book a special tea for five people. She’d read about us in the magazine, she told me. That’ll do nicely. 






 

Monday, 31 August 2020

No half measures

 Today is the last day of Eat Out To Help Out, the government scheme which has run throughout August where on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays customers have 50% off the cost of their order. The government pays the other half up to a maximum of £10 per person.

The scheme has meant we’ve been particularly busy at the beginning of the week and as today is also a Bank Holiday we are bracing ourselves. This is our only Bank Holiday of the season.

Most people know about EOTHO and smile happily or raise their eyebrows when their bill for sandwiches, tea and scones is so low. Some make no comment at all but surely walk away with a spring in their step. Some add items - extra drinks, an extra sandwich, a cake each instead of to share...

One lady last week made me very happy. When I added up her lunch order and told her that the Chancellor was paying for half of it she said “Ooh, in that case I’ll have a bag of crisps.”