Sunday, 31 August 2014

Finished! Just like that (as Tommy Cooper would say) !!!!

As quick as it started, emotional goodbyes are being said as our holiday guests (and team) pack up and go home!! I always find the summer holidays amazing as half way through it seems like it's never going to end and yet when the end comes it's always like 'wow' where have they all gone!! Some of the families have become our regulars for this six weeks and its been a delight to see them - all of them so lovely and so happy to have a little bit of Salcombe as there own for a short while. 

The only difference this year seems to be that an awful lot of adults are still here (we were still fully booked last night!) so we foresee this summer going on for a while longer - and of course this morning the sun has come back out! Sunday lunch (today) we are fully booked inside............

It has been an amazing summer for us with many, many, many thousands of meals having been served in this 6 weeks of glorious madness. Our team this summer have been absolutely exceptional! There are always a couple every year who either haven't got the stamina for it or think they've come for an easy summer ride and yes we did have a tiny bit of that this year, but the ones who stayed to support our full timers and us have been totally, utterly, incredibly amazing!!! 

In the top photo are Tom, Lily and Lauren - all three are intelligent, kind, nice, hard working individuals with amazing work ethics that will take them far in life. Lily is at university (middle blonde) already and Tom & Lauren start this year. I think if I remember rightly Tom & Lauren got 5 or 6 A*'s between them. 

In the picture below is George - just 16 and an amazing young man with huge potential. He is one of our 'runners' and again hard work comes naturally to him - in fact we often forget he is only 16. Everyone adores George and despite that angelic smile where there is banter to be had he gives back as good as he gets!!! He now goes back to being one of our weekend team. His older brother worked for us in the same way as George is - as a Saturday lad through to university. 

Then we've had Alex, Jack & Grace all from one family who have a holiday home down here. Also Will & Lucy - another brother & sister act who live here. Ben has been with us so long it feels like he's a permanent member of the team, but he's currently in Hong Kong on university work - or so he says! Then Georgia - lovely, lovely Georgia! Bags of pub experience and she's joining us FULL TIME!!!! Hoorah!!!! 

Between them they've run, smiled, carried, smiled, sweated and smiled some more! They've gone home at the end of shifts more exhausted than I expect they ever thought possible - but they did it! Friendships have been made, a little romance I believe, and lots of laughs. 

I don't think I've forgotten any of the summer team - but Tim & I and the rest of the gang could never have got through the holidays without each and everyone of them - THANK YOU my lovelies. Then of course there is the regular team led by Rob, Glo and James who are far too numerous to mention - but to all the kitchen team, all the front of house team, to our 2 fantastic cleaners - THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!!! 

In the middle of this madness we had a fantastic down on one knee marriage proposal from Steve to Lynn last weekend - both local people and I managed to find a table for them for this great event! Several of us were in tears as it was incredibly romantic, Lynn had no idea whatsoever and they very kindly sent me beautiful flowers for arranging the surprise.  

Then there have been the ice bucket challenges (which I am NEVER EVER doing!!) from SOH and Head Chef James - both of them great sports! 

Then there were the Old Gaffers who NEVER fail to delight our guests - yet again last night there was a fantastic atmosphere and they were loved by all. 

Lastly, Christmas menus are now finalised, letters written to local firms and I shall be out and about next week enticing people to have their Christmas celebration with the award winning Victoria Inn. 

As for the wooden boards in the Sainsbury's trolley?? 
Well that my dears is all part of the secret Autumn menu I'll be unveiling this coming week....... a landladys  life never stands still!!! 

Till next time my lovelies - enjoy the return of the sun, 

Liz x

Friday, 15 August 2014

Regatta Week is here

Yes - it's Salcombe Town Regatta weeks again and that means we're half way through the 'season'. My goodness what a summer we're having as well............ we just can't believe we are as busy as we are!! We knew that with the newly improved Vic we'd see a rise in business - but flip me sideways we have been bowled over by the huge amounts of visitors we're having. Of course, STILL many guests are seeing the Vic as she now is for the first time and that reminds us all how gorgeous our pub is (we're already taking her for granted!) and just how much she means to so many visitors. 

The garden is being very well used of course by families with squillions of children in tow and I re-started feeding the chickens as a learning experience for the kids! That's always fun but I forgot just how much fun it can be - I love to see the look of wonderment in their eyes as the chickens come quite close for their food. So many children worried we eat them when they get old.....??? We don't is the answer. 

The weather has been pretty fair for the Town regatta and it was great to see a little market place in White strand for a few days instead of just cars - we even had a little train! 

I wish we were allowed to have a regular market place there - but I guess car parking gives South Hams council more revenue???  

I have to say that it was also very nice to have Fore Street pedestrianised for a couple of hours - children could run about with no fear of being sent to A & E by cars driving far too fast!! Every now and then it gets talked about, but never seems to get past the talking stage! Of course its a bit of a nuisance for deliveries (especially when our own dray was here for well over an hour Tuesday with a MAHOOSIVE load successfully blocking traffic every now and then!) and also lots of other shops that rely on regular daily deliveries, but other seaside towns manage it, so why Salcombe can't is totally beyond me!!!! 

Anyway - off my soapbox and more about the regatta - last nights fireworks were superb!! SOH and I stood and watched them like a pair of young lovers (aawww) along with hundreds and hundreds of many more people -  young and old oohing and aahhing at the colours and bangs, but it has to be said that this years display seemed particularly spectacular. 

We also had the Kingsmen singers, Panache and Morris Men last night - and then most of them invaded our pub after their performances! The Morris Men sat in the library room and entertained people for an hour - flipping fantastic it was as well.  Whilst the Kings Men sang in our pub the other evening - completely ad hoc and absolutely fantastic.

We've just emptied the charity box for the Hearing Dogs Charity - if you remember we donate the entire amount from our dog menu Al a Bark to this charity and I'm glad to report that since re-opening in February we have raised about £720............ just by selling dog chews etc!! One such grateful visitor of our dog menu was the gorgeous Yogi pictured here. A beautiful mild mannered dog who found my ear canal interesting and tasty!!!! My own 2 dogs were less impressed at his scent on me! 

Anyway, it's our one day off together this week - so I'm off to slump in front of my Kindle (my new found love!) and relax, 

Laters my lovely friends,  

Liz x