I spent last Saturday with my wife in both a professional capacity as well as a social one. I’ll cover the professional part first.
I’m still on the hunt for a suitable front cover for my forthcoming poetry chapbook, LIVING LEITH. I had earmarked yesterday for its release but that wasn’t tenable what with the cover problems.
So I called in the help of my photographer wife to assist with new ideas and the resultant photoshoot.
Gail came up with a host of brilliant shots from Leith’s Shore and surrounding areas, which has only helped to further my problems by making it ever harder to decide which direction I want to take the cover art. Give a man too many options, and all that…
So I’m pushing back the date by about a week – I’ll announce the final date once I’ve decided on the front cover. As usual, it’ll be published under my pseudonym, Chas Stramash, and on the website: http://chasstramash.wordpress.com
On the social front, last Saturday was the second of a 4-day weekend break and I intended to enjoy it. My wife and I took to the town and visited a couple of pubs, taking in The Rab Howat Band as well as a meal.
We ate in what used to be Le Sept, and I was very disappointed to witness the demise of a once-great restaurant – my favourite in Edinburgh at one point.
When it was situated in the Old Fishmarket Close it was a romantic and beautiful place with character and great food. You could spend your whole night there and not care what the time was.
It later moved to a larger home in Hunter Square, which I always thought was a bad move. You still needed to make a reservation to be seated on a Saturday after the move, so its popularity seemed to be continuing.
However, when Gail and I walked in on Saturday on the off-chance of getting a table, we found an empty restaurant with the staff milling around bored. On closer inspection, we also discovered it had recently changed hands and is now of Italian name and decor, although the menu is largely unchanged from its French days.
And that’s only the start of its problems. While the food was very good indeed, at £25 a main course I would still have expected the chips not to be cooked frozen with my fillet steak – or perhaps even better, to have the option of mashed potatoes instead.
Mixing up the steak sauces with the order is perhaps forgivable, but having to place a scarf around my wife’s neck to keep her warm is not. I went to the loo at one point, and on descending the stairs could actually see my breath. Naturally, there was no hot water either.
They badly need to do something about the heating if they want people to come and dine comfortably.
It’s sad to see such a fine place fall to such lows and I doubt I’ll be back to Le Sept, or Pulcinella as it’s called these days. It’s lost all its charm and personality, and is as good as dead as a favourite place to dine.
Time to go and watch the Grand National on the television. Here’s to an enjoyable, exciting, and safe race.