31/10/20 Wembley v Biggleswade United, Spartan South Midlands Premier Division. Off and On.

Some weeks I struggle to think of a sub-heading, some weeks it’s easy. Given the current situation, date and venue, I could’ve written a whole page of them….well screen full anyway. If you’re thinking he’s already seen Biggleswade this season, you’re wrong, 21 days ago it was the Town version. Not only have I not been to the place and thus don’t know how big it is, but I never expected the place to have two clubs. Even if they are non-league. As I got my lottery ticket, I wondered how long I’d still be able to do the ground hopping and ale trailing thing.

Halloween or Covid victims?

As the chances of finding a vaccine seems to be becoming more and more remote, the government is looking into the viability of scientists injecting clouds with hand sanitizer. Giant speakers will be positioned with sensors that detect when it rains. With Blue Pearls track from 1990 blaring out, the population will be encouraged to go ‘Dancing Naked in the Rain’. With the temperature dropping, dancing will have the dual effect of keeping people warm, aswel as exercising them too. With the train moving off, it appeared Jinksy had missed it. He’d had a heavy night on the beer and so I wasn’t too surprised. With headphones jammed in, I settled down and watched out of the window. Being on the Chiltern line, we stopped at Leamington Spa. With the Albion game postponed on us, I’d made one last desperate attempt to take a game in there, I’ve posted the account of it on this blog, not that I’m recommending reading the rubbish, but with the country on the verge of a second lockdown, it seemed ironic we’d come full circle and got absolutely nowhere. As the train carried on, Jinksy private messaged me on WhatsApp, he’d managed to just make the train, but was at the back, I was in the first carriage, so waited for him, when we got off. We were both hungry so went to the Metropolitan Bar, a Wetherspoons at Baker Street. Normally, the place would’ve been full of little football mobs on a Saturday morning, it was empty. We got the tube to Piccadilly. Neither me or Jinksy could get over how quiet the centre of London was. It should’ve been teaming with people. It wasn’t. There was hardly any shoppers, sight seers or anybody else really. The only thing that was, was a deluge of rain. I couldn’t smell any hand sanitizer though. I have to do much more research when it comes to ground hopping and ale trailing at the moment, my first on the small itinerary I’d poured over, was the Old Coffee Shop. I wasn’t even sure that it would be open or whether it was booking only, I took the chance. Turned out to be a good move. I have actually covered the place before, but it’s pure eye candy in terms of decor and in terms of beer, it’s got a range of ale that is always out of the ordinary. It’s still retaining that laid back feel to it too.

Signed and sealed with a Kiss.
Yet we’re running scared of a virus.

The Crown, a Nicholson’s place was a different matter, virtually no real ale, which is unusual for a Nicholson’s, the place was dead. In the heart of what should’ve been hustle and bustle, with theatre goers eagerly anticipating the performance they’d just got tickets for and those shoppers. The Lyric was a contrast again. It was quieter than what would’ve been usual for a Saturday lunchtime, but it was still busy, and like the Old Coffee Shop, had that laid back atmosphere that is gold dust at the moment. It was evident from the breaking news bulletins that an imminent announcement by the government was going to be made in regard to the country going into a second lockdown. Will it work? Course it won’t. We got the tube to Sudbury Town, only we didn’t make it, I got Jinksy to check again on Twitter to see if the game was still on. It wasn’t. It really had come full circle. I suppose, at least the game was called off due to the pitch being unplayable. It is of course, that time of year when warthogs run amok on pitches. With the game called off, with no chance of making the next closest game and no guarantee that a herd of warthogs hadn’t been running amok on that pitch too, we made the snap decision to return to centre, address unknown. As I always try and take in a visit to my favourite pub in the centre of London, I suggested the Harp just down from Leicester Square. Jinksy didn’t need much convincing that it was a good idea. After a couple of pints there, and with keeping tabs on the Blues game, we got the tube to Euston and the Euston Tap. The cold reality of another lockdown was starting to kick in. Hearts were playing Hibs in the Scottish cup semi final, held over from last season. Originally, I’d planned to go to it. With no fans being allowed at any level up in Scotland, I won’t get to go to the final either. Hearts won as did Blues. With enough time for a last pint before my scheduled train back, we went to the Allsop Arms. Touching down back in Brum, me and Jinksy said our goodbyes, not knowing when we’ll get to start life again. As of Thursday, it’s back to exercising round our own personal prison courtyards once a day whilst the country is mothballed, and goes either moldy or rusty.

FOOTNOTE:- Sorry to say, it’ll be back to regurgitating memories until, or even if, we come out of the other side of this.

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