For Edinburgh-based Antipodeans

Today is not a good day for cycling in Edina, sporadic rain and life-threatening gusts (I was almost blown under approaching cars on at least three occassions) have conspired to keep all but the most foolhardy off the roads. I’m an idiot though, and as such headed out to view a potential flat and pick up/drop off some stuff from me and the ex’s place in Portobello. Thanks for letting me have the camera dear, but the next time I see you can I please get the plug for the damn battery charger?

Seeing as conditions hadn’t improved any while I was there I decided to take advantage of the cosy little pub downstairs – The Espy – where I worked until mid-December last year. A pot of tea and warm, homemade, triple-chocolate muffin managed to sneak their way past my dietary guardposts and I had a chat with Amanda, one of the owners.

Now Amanda is one of those former colonials who have managed to sneak past customs back into the motherland and proceeded to do things annoyingly better than we do, in her case running pubs. She turned a formerly notorious and recently indescribably bland establishment into the heart and soul of Portobello, known across the city for the quality of food, decor and service (and yes, it’s named after The Espy in St. Kilda, Melbourne). I’m not just saying this as a former employee, such blatant plugging and arse-licking is anathema to me. I’m saying it cause it genuinely rocks the seaside casbah. If you don’t believe me, go and check it out for yourself – just make sure you book a table, especially at the weekend.

Anyway, to get to the point it’s Australia Day on the 26th and as such Amanda has decreed that The Espy is going to go apeshit mental with all kinds of festivities kicking off from 12 noon. From what I can remember there’s going to be an Iron Man contest on Porty Beach, a barbie, a Kylie and Jason look-a-like competition, a wet t-shirt contest (male and female!) and, unfortunately, an INXS tribute band playing from 4 till 6. Well, the band might be okay if the singer has a belt round his neck and simulates masturbation for the duration of the gig… There’ll be Oz-based munchies on the go as well, such treats as kangaroo burgers, meat pie and – of course – barbecued prawns. It’s going to be heaving with Aussies and I know for a fact that 5 or 6 are actually coming up from London especially for the event.

So if you have the day off on the 26th or fancy something different to eat and a bit of a laugh in the evening then get your ass down to sunny Porty and join in the fun. Just tell them the fella who has the flat for sale upstairs sent you and they might even give you a cheap pint of Fosters…

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