Monday 13 February 2023

Watch Out for Wednesday

Thursday is the new Friday some would have you believe - well, especially for those that work from home for part of the week. The logic is, if you can get away with it, that if at all possible, you don't work Friday and Monday. This makes sense, of course, as you then get a longer - much longer - weekend as it were, as you don't have that pesky journey to and from work.

Now I have a feeling that while this applies across the board in the UK, the effect is more acutely felt in London. Not only is there a greater concentration of workers, but almost uniquely, most still travel to work by public transport and are thus more likely to have a soothing libation after it.  I may be wrong, but I rather fancy that many journeys to work outside London are made by car and certainly in the dog days of work for me, after work drinking simply did not happen and that can only have got worse since then.  In London, however, the after work pint still occurs, and I always enjoy being there at work chucking out time for the bustling atmosphere.

A couple of weeks ago we were in London for the first time in ages - well last October - and after visiting some quite busy pubs on Tuesday night, on Wednesday I met my pal Nigel for a couple of lunchtime pints and a chance to put the beer world to rights. For convenience, we met at Woodins Shades, a Nicolsons pub across from Liverpool Street station. This was around late lunchtime, and it was fair to say that the pub was very quiet indeed. In fact, Nigel remarked that he used to work in the vicinity years ago and then the pub was always full at lunchtime. Not so now, it seems. 

Two or three pints later, after Nigel departed to his Cask Marque duties, I arranged to meet E nearer our neck of the woods. You get decent if expensive pints in the Culpepper, a quite posh and very attractive pub in Commercial Street, a ten-minute walk away from Liverpool Street. It has become quite a favourite of ours. I got there about half past three. It was deserted, and I remarked on this to the barman, who cryptically said it wouldn't be for long. He wasn't kidding. Within half an hour the pub was getting reasonably busy, and within an hour, by half past four or thereabouts, it was rammed.  

Fortunately, I had sat on a bench and was able to squeeze E in, as by the time she arrived, it was standing room only - and it isn't a particularly small pub.So what's going on? It seems, from what I can glean, that most businesses require workers to be in the office for a certain number of days in the week if working from home. It also appears that the day most choose to be in work is Wednesday, so if you want to go to the pub for after work chat and see your colleagues, Wednesday is the best day for it.

In these difficult times, working from home does pubs no favours, but this at least offers a glimmer of light if it is repeated elsewhere. Elsewhere in London, that is.

We also visited the new(ish) Aldgate Tap, which is dead handy for us. It seemed to be trading well on Tuesday and Wednesday nights. It must help, it being so close to Aldgate Tube Station. Prices here are decent for London.

Talking about pricing. London is never cheap, but we noticed how much more expensive it was since our previous visit in October last year. I think the cask beer in the Culpepper had risen by the best part of a pound.