Having seen our closest bar close (Santa Barbara) amid rumours of an "investment opportunity", it was with some interest we saw the outside area being cleaned up - followed by a blackboard notice "Opening Soon". What on earth was happening?
All was revealed when we popped into The Fly Again and spoke to the owner, Yiannis. He and his wife, Lucy, were very active and there were at least three new members of staff there. But of George, the manager of the last two years, there was no sign. The conversation turned to Santa Barbara and Yiannis revealed that when he returned from his holiday in the Czech Republic, George had informed him of "bad news". This was that he had acquired the keys of the Santa Barbara bar. He left immediately.
Our waitress, Gabriella, one of the three new members of staff, hails from the Czech Republic as do the others. Yiannis' wife, Lucy, also comes from that country. Gabriella was having difficulty with understanding our order, as her English is not yet up to speed. I tried Greek (always ready to practise my Greek when I get the chance) but she does not speak Greek. Argh ... but we managed in the end. Good luck to them all in their new lives in Cyprus.
Interestingly our next closest restaurant, The Half Way House, has a new member of staff. Daniel, you will not be surprised to hear, hails from the Czech Republic.
In any event, back to Santa Barbara. In our view it is a great shame that George is going to run Santa Barbara. He is ever-so-slightly oleaginous and irritated me greatly a few weeks ago by insisting that Greece was in a better financial state than the UK, and that - on a separate issue - the Greek navy would blow the Royal Navy out of the water. Not the best strategy to encourage the British, who make up the overwhelming majority of customers at The Fly Again and, historically, at Santa Barbara.
We shall watch unfolding events with interest but from afar. Customers we will not be.