And so it came to pass that my little corner of London was one which suffered a five day mains water outage which began at the end of last week. I didn’t know what was going on and the impact was softened by the tank of water in our loft. I noticed recalcitrance on the part of the hot water on Saturday, which by Sunday morning had become a no-hot-water-at-all situation, meaning I filled my bath with cold water and then a couple of kettles of hot to make it bathable on Sunday morning, glorying in how old school and Victorian I felt and blaming the whole thing on our boiler. Then the water from the tank in our loft ran out, too, and I realised we had a mains problem. It stayed like that for two more days. On Monday morning I washed in Evian: I’m so classy.

What has this to do with my pub life? Well, on Sunday evening after another spectacular Tayyabs curry, a young man’s fancy lightly turns to thought of his toilet, and I realised with some horror that I probably only had a single flush left before desert conditions struck. Being a sensible sort of fellow, I figured that that single flush should be saved for emergencies. The answer: trot down to the pub! A very pleasant half an hour in the gentle Sunday evening quiet of wood-panelled back room in The White Horse, Peckham Rye (outside the drought zone, apparently). The exciting last quarter of an hour of the Barcelona game, some decent small Tom Phillips prints, the call of nature and a delicious pint of IPA. Under the circumstances, what more could I ask?