Sloe Progress

Sloe Progress

Thus far Autumn has been absurdly stressful at Gloucester Studio. Firstly, my card reader broke (I prefer not to badmouth people so shan’t say which one it was) and while my lovely diners were happy to pay their bar bill via BACS, that is hardly a professional request to make of people. Long after I’d ordered a new one from SumUp, my old provider got in touch to inform me how to fix the problem and “helpfully” explained that the reason the reader had stopped working was because I had left it too long since using it. Can anyone think of a reason why I didn’t take card payments for a while? I “helpfully” outlined the COVID-19 pandemic in my reply explaining that no I wouldn’t go through many steps to reboot it as they had lost me as a customer when it took them so long to reply.

I’m the first to admit I’m not the most technical person and usually accept that if something isn’t working how I would wish, that the onus is on me. But I’m not taking the government closing my restaurant due to lockdown as being anything I could possibly take responsibility for!

The next thing to break on me was the e-commerce part of This saw me spend a week going in circles as I updated the PHP Version on the site (I’ve no idea what that means) only for it to crash the site, then when I reverted back to the old PHP Version, everything started working again. So, after all of the hours talking to tech support and reading articles, I just needed to turn it off and on again?

Hello, IT, have you tried turning it off and on again?" - GIF on Imgur

Anyway, at least I can take payments again so hurrah for that. On that note, there are two tickets left for the Pyromaniac Prototype on 13th November (I’ll be celebrating a slightly late bonfire night as the theme will very much be on things being set alight) and four left for the Pyromaniac Prototype Brunch on 22nd November. And… I type this very quietly (Scrooge’s look away now)… there will also be a special festive Pyromaniac Prototype on 4th December.

Happier slow developments are a big jar of infusing sloes. I love watching the colour creep upwards over the course of a few weeks before I give it a good shake to make it a uniform colour not unlike the shade of my purple hair.

Things are also looking good with Herefordshire Firewood Supplies where the lovely Kevin has cut me some “candles” (also known as Swedish Fire Torches) which he has kiln dried. I’ve a new log shed (allegedly) on its way so that’ll be a fun afternoon with my drill before I unload all my lovely new wood.

I appreciated the huge roar from Kevin’s kiln.

Finally, my new restaurant sign; a bespoke carbon firepit made by the rather talented Liam McKinley, now lets diners know they’ve found Gloucester Studio on event nights. I’m delighted with the result.

I feel my new signage is excellently on brand.

The stresses of small enterprise are easily outweighed by the joys of the wins. While one must deal with largely faceless corporations for such things as finance, it is a genuine delight to drive out to look at kilns and talk wood with someone who really understands the rural economy and commission work from talented artists.

I hope you have a lovely autumn.

Flame on.


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