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And the Darwinian Award Goes to…… Reflections of a Reluctant Landlady

Welcome to the 30th blog in my series, Reflections of a Reluctant Landlady. People often ask how many more anecdotes I have; the answer is plenty. Over my seven years of running pubs, I've witnessed and learned a lot, some stories fit for public consumption, others... not so much. This week, I thought I'd share some of the daftest things customers have asked or done. Here’s a list of just ten:


  • In tenth place, turning up one year early for your booking – oops.

  • In ninth place, booking a night for a venue in Salisbury UK, when you are actually visiting Salisbury USA.

  • In eighth place, phoning up the emergency number in the middle of night, waking the off-site manager on call, to tell him you could do with some paracetamol for your period pain.

  • In seventh place, phoning ahead of your booking and asking if we can place a picture of a squirrel on one pillow, and a ferret on another (yep, don’t know what that one was about).

  • In sixth place, a grown man deciding to climb up a flimsy plum tree in our garden to nick the last plum, when the branch snapped causing him fall into the river below, clutching the rotten plum in his fist.

  • In fifth place, hats off to the stag party who stripped off naked when leaving the premises, then struggling to cross the busy A36, so standing there for quite some time in all their glory for passerby’s to see, alongside the pensioners sat eating their lunch by the window.  And we were their first stop!

  • In fourth place, the man who thought it would be funny to show off by trying to prove he was as macho as a group of regulars, who had chopped up Trinidad Scorpion chillies and Bhut Jolokia Ghost chillies grown locally by a man in the village.   He was warned not to try them, but he couldn’t resist.  A minute later he was dramatically clutching his throat whilst screaming for an urgent glass of milk.

  • In third place, getting locked of your guest room in the middle of the night, stark naked and in view of the CCTV.

  • In second place, forgetting to put the ‘do not disturb sign’ on the bedroom door, and then proceed to make home-made explicit movies, forgetting you have complained that a light bulb needed changing, and failing to answer when maintenance knock on the door and asks if anyone is in.

  • In first place, however, my Darwinian Award goes to the young farmer who thought it would be funny to throw the ball down the skittle alley whilst his friend was putting up the skittles for him, smashing his eye-socket and ensuring they both spent the evening at A&E rather enjoying a nice pint and game of skittles. Luckily his friend forgave him, despite breaking his socket in more than one place…...


These examples taught me a lot about dealing with the public: there's never a dull moment, common sense isn't so common, and it's best to keep your clothes on in public places! More serious reflections will return next week. In the meantime, thank you to all who regularly read and share my reflections—it means a lot. If you haven't read my blogs before, you can find the previous ones by clicking here.


A picture of a trophy with the words "and the Darwinian Award goes to" underneath.

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