There has been a change, so far not a great change, but a change nonetheless. After fifteen years, the folk who had The Dolphin have left. Fortunately they still live in the village so we still see them, usually at the Dolphin under new management! It’s been a great fifteen years, as I’ve mentioned so many times here.
Obviously when we heard of the plans, on the one hand we wished them well, we wished them very well after all the very happy and enjoyable years and enjoyable pints we have had, but there was also communal thoughts about what would happen next. What would change? Would there still be a quiz? Quiz night is where I met so many people now great friends, surely that must continue? The regulars, not so regulars and occasionals expected new management to have new ideas and plans, but what might they be? Change is good, but supposing there was so much change it no longer felt like our Dolph, an extension to our homes, the extra room we had to go out/walk/drive/cycle to get to. To be honest, some things did need a little refreshing, maybe a change in décor, maybe an upgrade to the facilities, but we didn’t want the spirit of the Dolphin, the heart of the Dolphin to change. We wanted it to feel like home.
The penultimate night, the fabulous Lemon Sharks, the band in which my husband is the drummer, had a gig, a great gig with the whole pub rocking. It was a fantastic occasion, a wonderful atmosphere with everyone up and dancing through the three bars. It was a great way to celebrate a great era, and a great way to mark its end. We wandered down the following night, and there were only a few people in, as if farewells to the old team had been marked, and now all waiting for the new team to take over.
The following day, the pub was closed. The day after that was a Tuesday – and Tuesday is quiz night! We knew that a quiz had arrived, it was in the able hands of a regular quizzer from Team Am-Dram, but would the new people be ready? Texts and messages flashed about, phone calls were made, and arrangements put in place – because yes, there would be a quiz on Day 1 of the newbies! A further message arrived, cash only – the card machines or whatever the technology necessary was not yet in place.
Piggy banks were raided, ATMs addressed, and at our usual times, some early, some leisurely, some last minute, the teams arrived at the pub, swarmed in, ordered drinks and paid in actual money, sat in our usual places – let the quiz begin! All was right in the world! There was even a beer round (a random question at the end of the quiz, the winning team to get a free round of drinks next week)
It’s early days still, and no doubt there will be changes, but tonight we sauntered down to the Dolphin, sat down with one of the many T’s, Terry, had a couple of enjoyable pints, some pub-type conversation, and then wandered home down the middle of the street in our quiet little village.
So farewell then ….. the Dolophin as was
I only knew you from Lois’s stories
Of quizzes, late night conversations,
And beer that cheers.
But you have a special place in my thoughts
Not just because of the Lemon Sharks,
The impossible quiz question about adjustable thumbs
Or the connection between Western Super Mare
And Eric Thistlewaite
But also, because pubs like you hum to the conversations
Of the community.
May your new landlord keep what is good
Bring innovation and work to ensure
That Lois and Bari and all their chums
But despite the urge for change
Perhaps pig’s ears in batter are best kept
For that gourmet pop up ay Lymsham Wharf
Instead, on the anniversary of the Battle of Bleadon
The Lemon Sharks could sing the deeds of Eadnoth the Staller
And the defeat of Godwin, Edmund, and Magnus Godwinson
I wish you, the Dolphin
All the best as you sail into a new adventure
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Fabulous! Absolutely brilliant! I shall ask my ancient harper and bard to set it to music so we can twang round the camp fire up on the slopes of the ancient bell barrow, looking down upon the pill where Gorm the Halfbeard beached his longships!
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A plan Lois …… Lois a plan
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