Friday, 24 September 2010

I've found a hero in the bar!

How we all doing in Interwebland? yes a few days late i know but i've had the most amazing 3rd week of sept ever, even compared to when i was in Tropicana.

The bar has been packed to the rafters even on the nights its rained and had a good laugh with the customers in there, some repeat offenders others newbies but none the less they all socialized, got on and had a good time. It also made this my best september since i opened in 2007 and still got a week to go.

As the title of this post says i found a hero in my bar. Now everyone i have ever talked to about Pernod have said they have had a session on it that has made them sick as a pig but i found someone who has not had a bad reaction to it and his name is DEAN EATON, what a guy, i take my hat off to you, he surely is a god among humans LOL.

Anywhoooo, its been a funny old week weather wise, its been the hottest 3rd week in sept i've ever known but its also had cloud and rain and still warm at night. Thursday night it rained quite heavy so i went out and stood in it, my customers thought i was a bit of a loon but i haven't seen rain in 5 months and the rain was warm, shame i didn't have any WASH & GO with me but then again my hair seems to be washed and going anyway haha.

The resort is getting very quiet now, i run out of Smirnoff on wednesday night at midnight and had to go to my friends bar to borrow some as the supermarkets were closed as i drove down the road all the restaurants were empty, 2 or 3 bars were quite busy but the rest only had a couple in. I remember in 2006 when i just lived in Kalamaki that even at 2am the main strip was vibrant and buzzing, how things have changed and not for the better, lets hope the resort can get back to its glory days.

Well my bar is now all set up for the cold nights with inside ready to be set up as a chill out lounge, the weather tenting ready to be put up and the outdoor heaters set to go as it does get pretty chilly in Oct at night.

This season i have had many compliments and also many look-a-like comments some good, some bad, some a bit wierd. This season i've been told i look like like Graham Norton (many times), Alan Carr (how rude), Elton John (is there a theme with the first 3?) Colin Farrell (think they were blind or drunk), Jason Statham (I think they were after free drinks) and Ewan Mcgregor (I can handle this one). Out of all of them i think i'm proud of the Ewan Mcgregor one, anyone who compares me to Obi Wan is cool by me, not the Alec Guinness Obi Wan of course.

There's a new leader in the Oceanic Cocktail of the season, it was the Fry's Turkish Delight but now its my signature cocktail The Oceanic, with the Original recipe Mojito in second place, i made so many Mojitos on wednesday i had to go to garden centre to buy 3 more mint plants as my mint garden was bare, all that was left was the stems i even had to use the baby leaves by the end, aw poor little mint plants, there, there, there LOL.

Well not much more to write today, still going on my Tradtional Taverna Tuesdays and this week was the most bizzare, the white wine looked like vinegar and the vinegar looked like red wine, i ordered my food and the waiter brought my Saganaki from the kitchen then went across the road to the fish taverna i ate at last week to get my pork cutlet, whats all that about?

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

I've had a bad review at last, YEEEHAAAA!

As i've always said nothing is ever perfect in any business and my bar is definately far from perfect. I have had my first bad review although they didn't have anything bad to say about myself, or my drinks or the bar, they even said its a nice bar but it seems the people who were in there were the problem as they were to old for the reviewer. I have said this before which i think i'll have engraved on my tombstone "I'd prefer to have a full bar of old people having a few drinks than an empty bar for young people" they even seem to think that if your over 50 that people of this age don't know what a computer is, oh dear LOL. Also i find it a bit strange as i always ask every customer without fail is everything ok and if the drinks are ok as if not i'll replace it and not one customer has had a bad word to say or returned a drink.
In the Oceanic every year since 2008 i have had a guestbook, they are on the bar with a pen for everyone to see and for anyone to sign be it good or bad and for anyone to read. In those books in all there are over 1500 comments from different holidaymakers that have drank in Oceanic and not one bad comment has been left, these are the reviews that matter to me as the people sign it when they are in the bar.
Reviews are funny old things and you have to take them with a pinch of salt as its each persons individual opinion and not everyone likes the same thing.
If you walk in to a bar that has loud music playing and cocktails really cheap you can't walk away and complain on a website saying " the music was to loud and you couldn't taste alcohol in the drinks". When you walked in to that bar the music would have already been loud and if the cocktails were say 1.50€ what were you expecting from it so how could they complain? The same goes for Oceanic, it was set up for the 35+ age group (the reviewer is 25-34) and it says outside "chill out bar" so if your expecting pole dancers, loud drunken brits or an oompah band you've read the sign outside wrong LOL. The person also goes on to state that they think the reviews previous to theirs were put on by my extended family and friends, wow, the last time i had 40 friends i was the first person in my school with a pirate video tape of the film E.T.

Well its been a very up and down week, one night busy, next night quiet, one day cloudy, next day sunny but in all its been a really good week considering i've lost so many customer who have gone home but there are always surprises on every flight that comes in to the island.

Helens last week this week but its been a great 5 months so its not like she ain't had a long enough holiday haha and i only have 5 weeks to go which in a way i'm quite happy about as my body really has been put to the limit this year and a little break in lovely South Wales is just what the mind and body needs after this season.

From what i can gather from other workers out here a few of the businesses will be closing before the end of September so the resort may look pretty closed by Oct but i hope the owners change their mind as its terrible for the remaining visitors to come to a closed down resort, October can be a great month for business but even i think this Oct will be very quiet but i always stay open till the end.

Well its pool time with Helen now so she can top up her tan before going back to the UK with all the lilly white people, catch yah next week folks.

Thursday, 9 September 2010

Anyone need a cowboy on Zakynthos?

Its been another fun packed week here on the island where i was called to do some plumbing work so out come "The Yee-Haa Kid" with his set of tools that consists of a toffee hammer and a butter knife and off to work i went. Got to my friends house and his water pump wawsn't working to clever, so after a long look at it, a large intake of breathe i utter those immortal tradesman words "looks like a big job" and followed by "its gonna cost yah". So i got stuck in checking pressures, checking blockages, changing pressure cylinders, giving pipes a blast through and cleaning valves with cotton buds and after 2 days of technical precise work almost like a brain surgeon it was all fixed.

Kalamki seems to be starting to go quiet now that the schools are all starting back but in the Oceanic there has been no let up, in fact my trade has gone up, i even run out of my reserve reserve seats and had to get out the reserve reserve reserve seats from the Roof Garden restaurant across the road last night but that will all change after today as 26 of my customers and friends all went home which is half the bar but then again i never know who will turn up on the flights so we shall wait and see.

It was a great week with my good friends Sam and Caz, Steve and Jo, Richard and Trudy, Pete and Sharon, Michelle and John, Brian and Penny being here also lovely to see Ann and Johnny a bit more this year, thanks for your company even though i didn't have much time to spend with you what with being so rushed.

I think Oct will be very quiet month for me as alot of my regulars who come out the end of Sept/Oct came out early this year but with the season i've had that won't be a problem, it will give myself a nice break and give me more time to chat with the customers that do visit me.

Still got 6 weeks to go so its all gone to plan and already looking forward to next season with the complete refurb of Oceanic but still keeping the same qualities that my customers love about the bar.

I'm a bit brain numb at moment so just a short update today but will improve on next weeks.

Friday, 3 September 2010

All aboard but you can't get off!

Ok i know its a day late and you can stop texting now asking where's the update as here it is.

Well its finally happened, Kalamaki has got a land train, well not really, Laganas has got a land train which drives through Kalamaki but it doesn't stop. It just starts at Laganas and finishes at Laganas. And my, how the people on it look so happy and thrilled as they drive past Oceanic, i always give them a wave to cheer them up, you wouldn't believe these people are on holiday they look that fed up LOL.

So whats been happening this week, well my oldest customer Les was back with his mates Joe and Colin. Now if you have read my blog from day one i have mentioned Les before, he loves Matt Monro, was a navigator for the B52 bombers during the war and has an eye for the ladies at the ripe young age of 90. Always great to have the guys back in the bar even though they give me a bit of stick but its all in good fun.

Had a visit from the licence inspector and tax control and everything was tip top, all very straight forward and no problems at all which is good news but then again i run a tight ship, i don't mean i have a ship, its a bar, oh you know what i mean.

I have some sad news, i have taken my unique smoothie cocktails off the menu, i know i know, i can see your all devastated but they took so long to prepare and what withn the bar being so busy it just held everything up so they have been replaced by my confectionery cocktails instead and you have 4 to choose from, this is now the 4th time i've changed my menu but its good to keep my customers on their toes.

This week has been my best week of all time and i also beat my best target for a night of all time which was also earlier in the season, i was that busy on wednesday i run out of my reserve seats and had to get balcony furniture from the Oceanic Margarita studios to fit everyone in and in the end had to turn some regular customers away as i just couldn't fit anymore in, god did my old legs ache after that night haha.

So we're now in to September and Helen and I have continued to go on our TTT (Traditional Taverna Tuesday) this is where we find a traditional Taverna while out and about and have lunch there.
So what is a traditional taverna? Well first of all you have a Greek Taverna and a Greek Restaurant who both serve tradtional greek food but a Traditional Taverna doesn't have a menu where as a restaurant does. The traditonal taverna will have a blackboard with the food of the day written on it in Greek and the waiter will tell you what meals are available that day, usually about 6 in all. You can only find these types of tavernas in town or in villages around the island, in the resorts there are only restaurants which serve traditional greek food not tavernas. In saying that i have had some great food within the resorts but its so nice to go to a little locals place where all the food is cooked fresh that morning and when its gone its gone, then the next day the 6 dishes are all different. Roll on Tuesday. I have taken pictures of the places we have visited but i will post them all at the end of the season.

Its starting to get a bit cooler at night already and a bit of cloud today, better get to the pool a bit more before end of season as after that the only pools i'll see will be the pools of rain water in dull grey Wales, better dig out my wellies, please no sheep jokes at this point haha.

In the river there is a log, to cross the river is a slog, if you cross the river with this in mind, you'll be quite surprised at what you'll find!

Lets look at the rhyme more closely.

In the river there is a log, whats on a log? Bark so this may lead you to think of a dog but what else barks? yes a person with a cough.To cross the river is a slog, when you have a cough its a hard slog. if you cross the river with this in mind, Whats a river in your mind? yes a running nose, you blow your nose in to a tissue, you'll be surprised at what you'll find? After you've blown your nose you look in to the tissue and you may be surprised to find that you have to throw it away and where do you throw it away, yes your right you've guessed it its DUSTY BIN!