Ode to Peddlars

Kerry Gibbs extolls the virtues of her favourite neighbourhood watering hole.

by: Kerry Gibbs: Food24 | 25 Jun 2009

Six months after a fire damaged Peddlars on the Bend, it has finally opened and orphaned Constantialites can now return to their home-away from home.

Constantialites – abandoned
After Peddlars closed, I came to realise that many were left stranded and a bit out of sorts. They were without the comforting thought that after a hectic day in a world of change, uncertainty and disruption, we could return to the comforting and regular bubble of the neighbourhood pub.

I started thinking about all the consistencies of the pub atmosphere that I had begun to miss:

  • The welcoming and inclusive family vibe that seems to emanate from the pub and its managers, waiters and bartenders.

  • Regulars who sit at the same table with the same order of drinks and who will always discuss the same topic … sport.

  • Students who come on Sunday nights and order many rounds of drinks but will only share one large plate of chips.

  • The pensioners on a Friday who order their bottle of wine, fish and chips, and give you a 50c tip, with a “bless you child” goodbye.

  • The warm and comforting brewery smell.

  • The pub snacks: potato skins, wedges, platters and burgers that are the perfect hangover cure.

  • The background mix of tunes from Marcy Playground (Sex and Candy) to Britney Spears (Baby, one more time).

  • The token drunkard (or two), falling asleep at the bar and slowly slipping off his chair while the bartenders snigger behind their hands.

  • The drunk women you find in the bathroom bawling, who make you their new best friend and sob away their sorrows on your shoulder.

  • The sickly sweet, loved up couples that hide in the back and smooch until closing time.

  • Even the pervy old men who sit in the corner with their one drink and stare at all the young “lasses” that prance through the door.

    Where did they disappear to?
    My friends and I found it difficult to make any restaurant our regular hang-out. The stifling, correct-cutlery atmosphere just couldn’t compare to the laid-back atmosphere of our pub.

    I started exploring out of my comfort zone and found familiar faces and the pub archetypes at Forester's Arms and The Boer 'n Brit. Places with the same dependable and unswerving traditions. We had all moved from one comfort zone to another.

    As soon as Peddlars re-opened though, we all returned to our original watering hole. Another fact that I love about pubs, not only can you rely on the staff, but the patrons are dependable as well, we won’t let our home and second family down.

    Where is your favourite watering hole, where everybody knows your name? List it here.

    - None



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