Car Wars and Nee Bloody Craic

Things have been a tad hectic.In fact last week was our busiest week ever at the Inn.
The Apprentice made a return to the kitchen a couple of months back..I decided to keep this piece of information under wraps for a while for fear of another disastrous outcome but thankfully he seems to have learned his lesson.To be frank I'm afraid he and Chef may have been spending too much unsupervised time alone together.Last week they went halfers on this:
I call this 'Ironic parking'

Its a *classic* [sic] old wreck car. Note the backdrop, I'm sure the irony of the parking location escaped Chef.
A 'project' for the winter months during which time it will undoubtedly be restored to its former glory.
The fact that the Apprentice has yet to obtain a driving license nor a competitive insurance quotation has not deterred his enthusiasm.A constant stream of equally impressed mates have relaxed contentedly in the capacious leather seats whilst simultaneously admiring the smooth up/down action of the electric aerial.The discovery of the Valet Park button was a particular high point,an invaluable feature which allows one to lock ones valuables in the trunk prior to passing over ones keys for polite parking.Now all we need is a valet to park it...preferably as far away as possible from our in demand parking spots.
The purchase of a new set of tyres has already incurred an investment far in excess of  the value of the car itself.
Yesterday morning I was awoken at 6.45am to the sound of a strange squeaking noise,now there is undoubtedly an abundance of varied wildlife round these parts, in fact last week we played host to  an uninvited squirrel in our kitchen, but this repeated eee eeee eeee eeee sound was a new one on  me.I  squinted sleepily through the early morning sun to  observe Chef and The Apprentice out in the car park with soapy sponges and buckets in hand,lovingly washing their new acquisition PRIOR TO STARTING WORK.
To be fair I've never seen either of them so happy.
In Chefs own words :'I've never been this excited since the day I met you..'
I happened to mention that Id need to sort out my own transport arrangements for the winter months,mindful of the daily drive up the hill to the New Pub.
Then today this arrived:

A pick up.
Which will be perfect for me during the inclement winter conditions 'when the dray cant make it up the hill and I have to go and collect the kegs myself..'
How thoughtful.
And all I had in mind was a new set of snow tyres...

Come the end of the week we were both exhausted, but only Sunday night behind the bar to go prior to a well earned early finish and rest.
You know when people are asked what they like best about running a pub, invariably they will  respond 'the craic'?
This 'craic' mullarkey is mentioned on nearly every pub web site( come down and enjoy a pint and some craic with the locals),in fact we are actually guilty of propagating this myth ourselves.Admittedly the craic can be brilliantly entertaining but what every web site fails to mention is that not all craic is good craic.
In fact lots of it is mind numbingly boring.
There's a chap that comes into the bar on a weekend.He's known as 'nee craic'(pronounced  knee) and not to be confused with the similar Scots equine 'nae craic' which can be heard just over the border.
Why is he known as Nee Craic? Because he has Nee bloody craic...
Now here's the strange thing.If the bar is packed,Nee Craic goes home,but if the bar is empty he stays as late as he possibly can sipping his half pint of ale,each of which can last him 45 minutes at least.
Predictably Nee Craic turned up this Sunday.By 10.15 most had departed leaving Moi,Chef and Nee Craic.
Chef was having trouble keeping his peepers open so retired to the comfortable bench seating in front of the fire.
I have a well rehearsed routine which I employ in this situation:

1 Find a task to relieve the monotony,usually polishing glasses.
2.Encourage Nee Craic to impart a  run down of his week(which is exactly the same every week) which keeps him going on his own then I can add the odd 'oh yes' or 'really' at appropriate intervals.Culminating in the Friday morning decadence of the sausage sarnie at Tebay services.All delivered with monosyllabic tedium.

Presently, out of the corner of my eye I noticed Chef nod off, and begin to emit soft snoring noises.As Nee Craic leaned over to feed the fire with yet another log(obviously in for the long haul tonight), I seized my opportunity deftly  launching a damp blue cleaning cloth in  Chef's direction which conveniently caught him full face.He looked momentarily disorientated then smirked  with obvious pleasure at his misdemeanour before snuggling back down.
I kept on with the polishing,making some effort to talk over the top of Chefs impolite punctuations.
'I see two dogs got through on Britain's Got Talent'
(Slow and deliberate sip of half pint)

'One singing'
(Further definitely unpregnant pause.Further slow sip of the ale).

'One dancing'

Dear God.
As Chef says he could send a glass eye to sleep.


TCFO said…
I have never heard "put a glass eye to sleep" but it's a good one! And so sweet that you included in The Chef's most exciting life moments. I thought that very generous of him to tell you that! Not you don't have to be too jealous of the car!
Perdita said…
Ha, I remember back in my bar manager days there was a guy like that. We used to call him 'pumpkin eater' because no one would sit with him a while, especially not women (as in the song about a man who 'had a wife but couldn't keep her'). I could never work out where the change came from- surely he must, sometimes, have to break a £20 to produce the change? Strange indeed.
Alison Cross said…
Tartarus has been making noises about a 'project'. Although he has in mind an old vintage motorbike and I've got the traditional island mid-life crisis vehicle in mind - an ol' tractor.

Pick up is an excellent idea for the snow. No joke.

The boring guy in the bar. Every pub has to have one, it's The Law! Just make sure he doesn't scare away your customers!

Make a glass eye go to sleep - very funny!

Ali x
Ali- the farmer next door has a really ole 40s Massey Ferguson tractor I've been trying to sneak a pic of him on it can't be that many of them left still being used.And yes every pub has a chap who bores the pants off everyone,and an alcoholic tho we currently have a vacancy for that position ..

TFCO- No I'm not envious of the car at all!

perdita:yes there's a chap who comes in who only uses change here,I think he has one of those large whisky bottles at home..
Young at Heart said…
oh wow...I love your pick-up ...honestly I think you will love it too come the wild winter...very cool!!
After the drains, the dregs.
I don't know if I could stand the tedium of the endlesly boring drone of listening to the character you laughigly refer to as Nee Craic.
I think I'd shoot him. Then probably myself.

Thanks for sharing the engrossing story of the New Inn and the great times you all have servng the "Great British Public"

Just curious.
Do you serve "Yorkshire Pudding served with Onion Gravy and a Giant Sausage"?
And if you do, does your Chef and The Apprentice make it fresh or from deep frozen?
YAH:it's growing on me but it's a very bumpy ride..

TSB: Pffffff. frozen *obviously* it's the only way to achieve the authentic flavour.
"it's the only way to achieve the authentic flavour."

Ahh, that explains why every pub manages to produce an identically tasting Yorkshire Pudding served with Onion Gravy and a Giant Sausage.
I had originally put it down to excellent training in the notoriously tough "Pub Food Academy" hidden in the shambles of York.
If I was back in your neck of the woods, I'm sure I'd have a bloody good try at the alcoholic vacancy. In the mean time, try slipping something in Nee craic's beer. You might get a two for one deal.
I'm surprised you can't hear my howls of laughter!

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