Hipster cool in Hastings, Rules Restaurant and almost a media luvvie…

What a week. Riotously wet and stormy weather and old friends Pete and Jacky from Birmingham sampling Hastings at its wettest. Our neighbour Angela celebrated a very big birthday, we went to London to meet old friend Alan for lunch at Rules Restaurant and took part in a TV project at the Jerwood, all while preparing for the annual WI Bazaar on Saturday.
      The TV thing is probably the most exciting, but I have promised not to write about it just yet, so sorry readers, you’ll have to wait….    
      We took Pete and Jacky to look at the Saturday flea market at the old Observer Building. Very cutting-edge website, I see. Philosopher and I had never been before and we were surprised at the level of hipster cool, all derelict industrial style with a bar, food, performance space and lots of stalls. They have events and meaningful learning opportunities as well. The building has been empty for twenty-five years, and this is just a temporary occupation.
       We had a coffee and a look round. Much energy and enterprise. Battleaxe was impressed, and in the heat of the moment, gave her details to the people from the Hastings Independent, who are always looking for writers, editors etc. 
       Developers have plans to turn the building into flats plus other stuff. As this seems to involve sticking an additional seven stories on top of the existing building, it all looks highly dodgy to me in terms of feasibility as well as the appearance of the thing.  It’s a fine old building that really needs sympathetic restoration, but I suppose it would be better than demolition.

Observer Building flea – very cool – not my photo….


Observer Building – the facade

       The next day we went for a walk at Pett Level. The city dwellers found it bracing and exhilarating to battle against the wind and rain. We thought it was just…. wet. Then, a visit to Rye.

Pett Level – very wild

          Next day, it was our next-door neighbour Angela’s Big Birthday, so we went and helped her celebrate with champagne….
          On Tuesday we went to London, to meet our old friend Alan at Rules Restaurant. In 2013 we went with him to Simpsons-in-the-Strand, (see previous post). He has a liking for old-style English restaurants.  Opened in 1798, Rules is even more venerable than Simpsons, but felt more relaxed.  I know that Rules featured in the latest Bond movie, ‘Spectre’, which we have not yet seen! Here is a write-up about the filming.
          The interior is wonderfully old-fashioned, dark, and velvety opulent – particularly as they had decorated it for Christmas – but very cosy. Just the place for a dank November day. We started off upstairs in the cocktail bar, where, according to Marina O’Loughlin, they do the best martinis in London. I had a citron pressé, mixed to perfection.
          The restaurant menu majors on wild game and solid, comforting stuff like steak and kidney pudding. Don’t even think of Rules if you are vegetarian, or into any sort of faddy eating.  This is a place for people who have been brought up to eat everything put in front of them. For me, finding something a bit low fat was a challenge. I had wild rabbit, but it came with delicious, but rich, creamy mash as well as a few lead shot pellets. The food was very good and not eye-wateringly expensive, but as I say, not the place for a light and healthy snack.
           Next day, the TV thing which I won’t talk about, and back to pricing up bric-a-brac for the WI Bazaar, which is this Saturday, in Ore Village. As ever, everyone has pulled together to make and collect brilliant stuff to sell, but the current weather forecast is for sleet…..

Rules Restaurant.

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