Today saw the beginning of the first test cricket match since Lockdown. It began in Southampton. It’s between England and the West Indies. Except, things didn’t go exactly to plan. In one of those typical twists of fate, rain delayed the start of play.
This is made all the more ironic by the fact that we have had perfect cricket weather since Lockdown stopped any cricket from being played.
And I can vouch for the weather. It was very gloomy and wet. Not torrentially wet, just that constant English drizzle which Julius Caesar had such a problem with. Which only goes to show that good old JC was clearly a test cricket fan.
In the meanwhilst, at our house, we were gearing up for a special night. A night where we would travel all the way to Alresford. A night where we would have tapas at Pulpo Negro.
But, before heading down south, there was an important task I had to perform.
Normally I dye my hair the day before getting it cut but, given the absence of hairdressers for the past three months, I haven’t bothered. Underneath the coloured ends, my hair has become increasingly silver. I think I skipped the grey bit.
I was starting to like it and Mirinda even made happy sounds upon inspection. But, on deeper reflection, she decided I should dye it. And so that’s what I did this afternoon.
I should mention that I bought the dye ages ago in preparation. I couldn’t get my normal brand so opted for something new. Of course this meant guessing what the colour would be. While it is in amazing contrast to my beard (and eyebrows) I rather like the colour.
The new dye was rather odd as it turns a liquid into a foam without any shaking. Very odd but highly effective. Mind you, I still prefer the one with the comb attachment.
Eventually, we said goodbye to the girls and headed out for dinner.
We’ve been to Pulpo Negro before and absolutely fell in love with it. The food is exceptional, the staff lovely and the restaurant itself, an ambient delight. In fact, it made me feel like I was back in Spain. Until I looked out the window. So I stopped looking out the window.
We had lots of little plates of deliciousness, including ham croquettes, salted cod, giant olives and an amazing salad of Isle of Wight tomatoes.
But the piece de resistance had to be the pork belly ‘tacos’ and langoustine escabeche. Two little servings of magic for the tongue. Just before we left, the waiter told us that they were going to change the menu more often because of reduced clientele due to Covid restrictions. I almost begged him to keep the pork belly tacos.
Mind you, my favourite dish was dessert. The emerald green pistachio and olive oil cake was exquisite. It went perfectly with the chilled sweet sherry recommended by the waitress.
To say we thoroughly enjoyed it would be an understatement. We even enjoyed the drive, the longest we’ve made for ages. In fact, Mirinda believed they’d moved the town further away it took us so long.
For anyone close by to Alresford, the restaurant is highly recommended. Their website is here: https://pulponegro.co.uk/. You won’t regret it.
But, returning to the cricket, the first day of the test resulted in only 17.4 overs being played during which England managed to lose one wicket (without score) and only 35 runs. There were no spectators. There may have been a few seagulls on the hand sanitiser dispensers on the boundary.
Prick of the week
I haven’t had call for one of these since Lockdown started, mainly because there’s been a reduction in cars on the road. However, today, for most of the day, this van was parked a bit across our drive and, for reasons known only to the driver, on the nature strip.
Now, I know the nature strip actually belongs to the council and I really shouldn’t care but, honestly, why can’t people learn to drive and park properly?
It belonged to a couple of tradesmen who were doing some work either next door or next door to next door. I should add that next door to next door is the arsehole who thinks it’s okay to trim his hedge at 9pm on a Saturday using his very noisy electric hedge trimmer. For this unreasonable reason, I’m blaming him.