We’ve been away from the Beast for so long now I’ve forgotten what it’s like to get up before 9 and go earn a living. Despite constantly telling ourselves that at some stage we will get up really early and crack on with the poster sized to-do list on the lounge wall, we have managed to have a bit of a break. We never did quite manage to get away from the Jabberwocky entirely (we did not manage to leave the country despite the best vague plans), but it was enough. I don’t feel a tired sense of resentment against him like I may have done (but not mentioned, either to myself or the blog) back in December. I might even miss him.

The Beast, left at the garage

As is tradition, despite us not wanting things to come down to the wire, they naturally have, in accordance with off-season panics as set forth in the Gospel of Characterful Food Vans. The Beast went away for a new engine two and a half weeks ago, and our next event is Eat Street Leamington, this Friday. The Beast is currently in Leicester, in rehab for his smoking addiction. Again. For anyone keeping score, this is now his third engine since we got him; the forth that we know of. We are hoping, strenuously, that by tomorrow he will be back with nothing worse than a drinking problem, we can rejoice, clean and fill him ready for the weekend.

This is the challenge. To encounter these problems and, rather than flipping your desk and taking a baseball bat to the nearest printer, which I’d quite like to do today, to have a brew and carry on. It would appear that his new engine is not as new as we thought. To put it technically, it’s knackered, so the job ran over.

Not the end of the world though. Insert tea here.

A dog and some tea

It will be nice to get back out there and feel like I’m earning a living again. The problems with the van don’t actually stop him moving, they just add dramatic flair and smoke effects. Literally creating atmosphere, if you catch my drift. Getting him back tomorrow should not be a problem. We even have a new toastie to test out and we’ve already got a pretty full summer. I’ve not eaten a toasted sandwich in weeks and, youknow, kind of actually fancy one right now.

Having January off has worked out well. We got a lot of the tedious paperwork done, I got a great deal of writing out of my system and despite Radio 2 informing me on the way back from the wholesaler today that companies which have been closed for 4 weeks or more almost never start successfully again, I’m looking forward to getting back to business.

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