The Warrington-Ramsay Waltz

The Warrington Maida Vale
Or… Living the Limbo Loco in W9

I still work at The Warrington Hotel, a couple days a week. So naturally friends and neighbours and locals ask, confidingly, what my new boss, Gordon Ramsay is up to.

Life is conjecture, really. Most of it. After John Brandon stood up at his leaving drinks that October night and said good-bye, everyone about the Warrington became a sort of inane string of meaningliness rumour and hearsay.

Martin keeps the faith and tells everyone how wonderful it will be. The underlying implication of hope from him, naturally, is that he will be a part of it. The underlying implication of hope, from most everyone else, is that he will not.

Ben's Thai Breakspear's Warrington Sign
The rest of staff: we tread water and smile. Life is conjecture. Life is full of hills and valleys we cannot see around. We make friends with John, the incoming chef, and Adam, the representative of Ramsay Holdings, who is around to manage in his hands-off way. Gordon, Georgina, Renee, Miriama, Julia and I: we soothe the souls of the regulars and the locals by being familiar. We know your names, or at very least, your face and the jug or the straight glass you like your pint of Young’s or Stella in. We are the bridge and the bandage.

Still, I am taking photos, now and then, of the things I believe won’t survive the Ramsay sledgehammer. It’s hard to hold onto a memory, I’ve found.

After enough time in the water, even the strongest bandages wear away.

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Elizabeth Howard

Elizabeth writes literary non-fiction, haiku, cultural rants, and Demand Poetry in order to forward the cause of beautiful writing. She teaches and speaks about the rhetorical impact of beautiful writing. A recent transplant to Connecticut, she calls London, Kansas City, and Iowa home.

 

  2 comments for “The Warrington-Ramsay Waltz

  1. Eddie Hughes
    November 23, 2006 at 4:09 pm

    From the photographs, it is evident that the management of the Warrington is neither strong on the use of the apostrophe nor on the spelling of Brakspears. What are they good at?

    And apparently the new regime is renowned for the kind of language that some 12 year olds consider “big”. Good luck. But rest assured. In a few years, the foul-mouthed jock will have grown bored with Maida Vale and moved on … hopefully back to his own in sporran land.

  2. Andy
    November 24, 2006 at 3:56 am

    Great to have the inside info or at least the inside conjecture for a little while longer at least. But then all good things must come to an end, as we’re finding out.

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