By Sophie Becker
Elm Park Tavern
There’s a place that’s very close my heart. It’s also very close to my home and that place is the Elm Park Tavern.
For those of you who don’t know, it’s a little pub conveniently located between my house and Zoe’s. We owe it a lot because over the past few months the Elm Park Tavern has become our second home.
We work there most evenings, when the walls of SCA start to close in and we can’t bear to stay a moment longer. Most weekends too. Sometimes we just go to chat and listen and unwind. We’ve been there through break ups, through break downs, through all life’s confusing situations this year. We’ve been there to celebrate, to commiserate. We’ve had tears of all varieties. For every occasion it’s always there waiting to give us that peace of mind that only a cosy warm pub can provide.
I’m telling you – the bar staff have seen it all. They don’t quite know what to do with their new found pub pests. Laptops out – we probably don’t set the ideal pub vibe and we keep our orders to a minimum (small house red if they’re lucky, if it’s a very special occasion maybe some chips). We are students after all. But we hope they’ve grown as fond of us as we have of them.
It’s not the best pub in the world. It’s decorated to look just trendy enough that they can justify charging £5+ for a pint. But then again, there are several board games and a water cooler with cucumber inside free of charge, so really who’s winning now?
The Monday pub quiz always takes us by surprise when all we want to do is crack on with our work for the week quietly in the corner. Yet we forget to avoid it every week. We’ll probably make that mistake today.
Sometimes the football’s on full blast and Zoe and I have to sit in near-darkness surrounded by rowdy football fans, spilling their beers on our laptops as we desperate try and craft our campaigns. (I actually find this a bizarrely therapeutic work environment… not sure Zoe agrees.)
It’s our evening and weekend office. Many of our babies have been born here, many of them have died.
Elm Park Tavern is where the infamously non-sensical SMP “spoons hold you back was born”. It was incidentally that day when Zoe came in and said “there’s a man with a knife outside”. I thought this was a terrible cutlery-related joke but sadly it turned out to be true.
Elm Park Tavern is where Leli, Jacob, Dean and I decided to live in our current house together.
So I owe a lot to this little unsuspecting pub. I’m not sure what Zoe and I would have done without it. Panic profusely, I assume.
But if ever Zoe and I are to be successful, I reckon we’ll owe at least 70% of our success to the Elm Park Tavern.
Finding the right space and conditions to give birth to ideas is the jet-fuel of portfolio making. We’re just grateful we found ours a few meters away from both of our houses.
So I thought it only fair that I write a SCAB to say thanks.