For my international readers, this weekend over here we have been celebrating the 70th anniversary of our Queen’s ascension to the throne. We were given a 4 day weekend and told to enjoy ourselves. Which we did. Us English like a 4 day weekend and a booze up so we grabbed this opportunity with both hands.

On Thursday my mate Craig rocked up and we had a little wander about which lead us to Katz. As is now tradition we dived straight on the free retro gaming machine. We played 3 different football games, both of us with automatic keepers. Unfortunately his was like Jimmy Walker and stopped absolutely everything where as mine went to pieces as soon as one of Craig’s players crossed the half way line. I played him off the park every game but somehow lost 4-0, 3-0 and 1-0. Our shouts during these games must have been audible as someone en route to the toilet took a diversion and came into the room thinking we were watching an actual football match. Despite being robbed on the football I won the Ms Pac-Man, Space Invaders DX and Donkey Kong games so was happy with that.

From there we went to Blue Ginger. I keep meaning to try new things in there but the garlic king prawns are just on another level so I always have those along with a nargis kebab and tandoori chicken for company.

It was quiz night at the Black Country Arms and they had Sign Of Spring from Stonehenge Brewery on. This amazing green beer only comes out at this time of year and the brewery is one of the best I’ve been to so I always have that when it’s on.

We won the quiz, well I say we, Craig won the quiz. I contributed just one answer if I remember correctly about Forest Green Rovers changing their name to Stroud FC. It was a good start to the weekend.

On the Friday we had a Walsall CAMRA branch meeting along with a little ceremony to mark the 50th anniversary of the founding of the branch.The Pretty Bricks was chosen for this event as that is the pub where the branch was founded back in 1972. I chaired the meeting which went well but ended on a slight low point when in any other business somebody complained about having to sit through the meeting before getting to the 50th anniversary bit. I apologised for costing him time, closed the meeting and we got stuck into beers and free cobs and sausage rolls kindly provided by the pub.

The 50th anniversary part went very well. The first branch Chairman Brian who I’ve never met before made a speech as did fellow founding member Keith Watkins. Keith is still involved with the branch and at the end was presented an award of being made Honorary Branch President by our Regional Director Cy Day.

Keith being presented with his award by Cy.

Afterwards we had a few discussions amongst the committee members and I really hope the branch can push on after I step down as Chairman in October.

I then received a message from Kimbo. He and other fellow Walsall fans Coxy, Dan and Kev were in The Registry and did I want to join them. Hell yeah. I timed my arrival to perfection just as a UB40 act was finishing and soon the dj was pleasing the crowd with Sweet Caroline and the two Bully Ocean biggies back to back “Love Really Hurts Without You” and “Red Light Spells Danger”, all of which went down a storm. We had a good dance around and sing along then someone proposed going to the Walsall Arms. It’s a great pub and on my way home so it was a yes from me.

Kimbo, Kev, Dan and Coxy. Top lads to drink with.

Obviously I needed the loo first so there I headed. Regular readers of this blog will know that in pub toilets I always like to head to urinal number 2. The Registry has 7, there was just a sole user but he was stood at number 1. I headed for no 4 (if I can’t have 2 it has to be an even number). The man at number 1 was attempting to sing along to Baby Come Back and his rendition was very entertaining.

It was karaoke in Walsall Arms and I haven’t done it in a while but by now I was in an advanced state of refreshment so decided to go for my signature song Everybody (Backstreets Back) by Backstreet Boys. Kev joined me for a duet which was ace and we smashed it out the park.

I got up very late on Saturday. I cooked an egg sandwich and made a cup of tea and went back to bed. I wasn’t hungover, just very lazy. Eventually I got hungry, remembered that the Walsall Arms had a BBQ on and so I ventured out. With a cheeseburger ordered and a Salopian Golden Thread in my hand I joined Chris Steele and his partner Hannah. The England match which I’d forgotten about was on. Another friend Simon joined us but I couldn’t really get into the match so I moved on.

A short while later Kimbo checked into the Tap And Tanner. Him and Coxy were out for round 2 so I joined them. Whilst not overly busy it was great to see so many people dancing around at such an early part of the evening clearly enjoying the occasion.

Enjoying round 2.

I was peckish again so went to visit Triangle Pizza for the first time. Situated in the former Oysters chip shop opposite the library I’ve been wanting to tick this off since it opened a couple of moths ago. The staff were friendly and welcoming. The smallest pizza they do is 12 inch. They clearly know us Walsall folk like our food. I opted for pepperoni with added roasted chicken. I think it came to about £12. It arrived quickly. It was still early and I was in no hurry to get to Katz so I rested the box on a litter bin and tucked in. After weeks of picking orders for pizza boxes at work it was nice to finally get my hands on one with the actual product in it. An employee came out and went to his car and checked with me if everything was okay. I confirmed all was good. I’m not sure if his food being eaten off a bin is good for the corporate image but I bet Italians have done this at some point so it’s all good.

Great place to be fair.
Pizza on a bin. Classy bloke aint I?

After a couple of slices I headed to Katz and ate the rest upstairs whilst the band downstairs played classics by Ugly Kid Joe and Green Day.

Last port of call was Black Country Arms where I had a Fixed Wheel beer brewed specially for the Jubilee. We’d won 8 free pints at the quiz and this was the first of them (Craig said I could have them all, an offer I happily accepted). It was a great way to round off an memorable weekend.

Free beer in a proper glass. Smiles, happy day.