I'll be back. That could mean a number of things. It might be a quote from a Sci. Fi. movie, which in this case it ain't. What it is is one of the finest utterances that a new customer can offer (another being "that was the best pint of beer I've ever had.") A friendly couple was down last night listening to music and having a few pints. Turns out they have walked a lot of the same parts of Northern England that I have, and knew what pubs, craic and ale are all about.In contrast, we sometimes get customers that are clearly unhappy that nobody is waiting their table, and that they have to go "ALL the WAY back to the bar" for another pint. A few have gone so for as to urge me, for the sake of the business, to change my operating model. I try to explain how the character and personality of a pub is diminished when the focus changes from a place to get together (oh, and maybe have a pint or two and some food) to a place where one goes primarily to have a meal. But when the wayfaring traveler comes through the door and settles in with a pint, a book and a content expression, all is well and the sun shines on the bemused countenance of humanity.
"I'll be back" is also an assertion that I have a high probability of achieving later in the week, as I'm about to head out for a needed few days away from the pub. It's nearly a certainty. I mean, I might just end up on a plane bound for Edinburgh, but that idea will no double consign itself to the dustbin of wishful thinking. As usual. There are things to be accomplished in parts far removed from the locus of daily exertion, such as the simple act of thinking without interruption, and I'm determined to get on with it. There are some lovely rural parts of Oregon and Washington to mess around with, and I'll be checking out some Seattle and Portland haunts that I've never been to come mid week. Perhaps I'll be in your gaff, settling in with a pint, a book and a content expression. See you at your pub.