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SOCIALISING - August 2012

It’s been a quiet year for going out … quieter than I remember since peak illness years of 1997 - 2001. Yet again, it's because I’m having a poor year health-wise and with more misery to come as I have to go back to the hospital to have my face slash’n’stitched again - yes, more skin cancer, oh joy!

Wanting to make the most of a brief few weeks of okay-ish health and anticipating sunny summer days, I booked Sunday lunch at The Bingham - hadn’t been for a year but good memories - with some mates. The date, August 5th, was a few weeks ahead at the time. Sounds good, right?

Well, yes, other than the fact that it was the middle Sunday of The Olympics! Was I the only idiot who didn’t realise this? We were surprised to find the restaurant 80% full. It was the men’s tennis final, Andy Murray versus Roger Federer. Who wouldn't want to see it? Me & EaZyD tried not to look as upset as we felt at my blunder and we did, kinda, forget about it as we chatted, drank and ate our fill.

The Bingham seemed as good as it ever was - wonder why they lost their Michelin star? The location really is a treat, access great and they booked the parking space at the side for us. We did have a bit of kerfuffle at the table because they wanted to sit me with the back of my wheelchair to the only walkway for waiters and customers to access the restaurant. Beats me why they do this and they aren’t alone in it. I have speared so many waiting staff in the groin with the sticky-out handles on the back of my chair or tripped them up with its’ sticky-out wheels. So far, I have suffered some pain but no tray being tipped on my head; they have suffered more acutely. Anyway, these days, I’m a lot more assertive about re-arranging table plans if necessary and The Bingham were happy enough to oblige.

At 4-4.30pm, a shout went up. “Andy Murray’s won”. We weren't the only idiots in the room. We both love Federer but who would begrudge Andy Murray this victory? Not us. We relaxed and had a great meal. I’d recommend anything on the menu. £65 for three courses.

A great afternoon, despite my truly abysmal scheduling. We got back in time to see more Olympics coverage and will, no doubt, be going back to The Bingham. We just like it there. Go, if you live nearby and get an opportunity.

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