||[Mar. 5th, 2018|10:15 pm]
After a snowbound week, in which I didn't leave the house unless I had to (and I didn't have to), I finally went out on Saturday evening, to a long awaited dinner party.
The rule of the pub quiz team is that that winnings are paid into a kitty, and entrance fees are paid from the kitty. At full strength, we are quite a large team, but we often win and usually place, so the kitty grows, gradually but steadily. Long, long ago, before durham_rambler and I joined the team, it was used to fund the occasional weekend in a cottage somewhere, and as long as we have been members there has been talk of doing that again. Eventually we all accepted that it's not going to happen anytime soon, and agreed to settle for a meal out at a good restaurant. Even setting a date wasn't easy, but by aiming a month and a half ahead, we made a booking.
And then the heavens opened.
So on Saturday evening I put on boots and Yaktrax (durham_rambler swears by his Yaktrax: this was my chance to try them out) and we picked our way down the snowy hill to the bus station. Roads which are on bus routes are clear, and the buses were running to time, so there was no problem getting to Finbars, where nine of us occupied a private room, and had a very happy evening.
Bear in mind that at one level, the object of the evening was to spend money. At another level, this was just an excuse for a bunch of people who get on well in one setting to spend some time together in another setting and see how it goes. But still, since our budget was beyond what any of us would consider spending on an evening out, in an ideal world, since our the food would have been fabulous and the wines would have tempted us to extravagance. This wasn't the case. I like Finbars: the atmosphere is welcoming, and the food is reliably good. But it isn't all that exciting, it isn't one of those places where you want to try everything on the menu. About half of us - including me - had the scallops and the duck. Even with the reminder that I could go as far up the wine list as I wanted, I wasn't tempted (I chose a Duero, which was fine, and thought wistfully of a bottle of Tesco's Madiran in the rack at home). The real luxury was ordering another bottle whenever we emptied one - oh, and indulging in dessert wines, of course.
Three of us shared a taxi home. He wouldn't drive up the hill, of course, it was too icy, but by dropping us in the streets behind the house, he left us with a shorter walk, and through snow rather than over ice. I was impressed at how well the Yaktrax worked in giving me extra grip - until I took my boots off, and realised I was no longer wearing them, they had fallen off or become detached somewhere along the way. durham_rambler went straight back out, and found one, more or less where the taxi had dropped us.
Yesterday was quiet. But today the thaw has really set in. We took the car to one of the out of town supermarkets and stocked up, and in the time we were getting into tar saw both a taxi and a supermarket delivery van, two classes of regular visitors who have been conspicuously absent for the last week. There were bare shelves in the supermarket, but I was able to buy everything on my list. And this afternoon the post was delivered.
This entry cross-posted from Dreamwidth: comments always welcome, at either location.