It’s going to be a very different summer for local chef extraordinaire Andrew Holmes, and no mistake.
Right now, he and his wife Tracy would normally be filling up their diary with weddings and grandiose shindigs for their award-winning catering business.
As bad luck and Covid-19 would have it, of course, those plans have had to be put on hold, with, mercifully, the couple’s recently-opened Kilcoole deli, Kitchen 28, now taking centre stage.
Such a shift in gear means that Andrew can still greet each morning with his regular shake and bake routine, but this glitch in the matrix has also given the couple more time to spend together with their young son, Harry. Less meal time means more me time.
It also means they canfinally turn their back garden into a little slice of paradise. By turning it upside down.
So, what is life really like for Andrew, Tracy and Harry as the lockdown continues, and we all contemplate our Plans B, C and D?
Over to the bould Andrew, who generously kept a diary of the Holmes family’s new normal…
6.30am Our little man, Harry, starts our day rolling and poking us awake, then grabbing his Uncle Barry’s gifted wellies in anticipation of his early morning beach trip.
7.30am Greystones beach for family swim – in reality, jump in, scream and scramble out onto dry land! Then on to Supervalu, Charlesland, the only place open to grab a coffee that early on the way home.
9.00am Like everyone else, our lives have been turned round with Covid 19. No childcare, no childminding by grandparents because of the risks involved, and no creche. This makes it very hard juggling family life and running a business. Pre Covid-19, our main business was high-end catering, including weddings and corporate events with large gatherings; Government regulations have put paid to all that… until 2021, I’d expect. But, we are one of the lucky caterers with facilities and an outlet, so we are blessed.
11.00am – 3.00pm Tracy does the day shift at her deli, Kitchen 28, where excellent soups, sambos, coffees and cakes, are available. Tracy runs the business, the house and our boy. When this is all over, a couple of cheap nights away is on the cards! Can you book tables at Joker’s…?
4.00pm – 9.30pm I start the late shift, creating top quality food for takeaway and delivery, including amazing freezer meals.
Having the deli and the late takeaway has been great for us, managing to keep several jobs going within the local community. Hopefully, when Covid-19 is all over, and business increases, we will expand and create more jobs.
Some nights on the way home, my best friend, Kevin – who lives a few doors away – and I sit in the garden (2 metres apart, of course!) having a beer and a chat. Just for our own sanity – after all, there are only so many zoom chats you can do before your head starts spinning…
Every cloud has a silver lining though. The garden has been dug down and dug up, and reconfigured, with Harry mucking in – muck being the operative word. On both of us, head to foot. In truth, this has been an amazing bonding experience, which I wouldn’t change for all the world. Mind you, it still looks near enough to a building site, which makes me aware I’m much better at cooking than gardening!It has to be ready by the summer, though, or Tracy has threatened serving the divorce papers.
Cant wait for this to be all over. Just a few nights in a row of good sleep. Plus, I think the grandparents will be there with open arms to give our little man a cuddle and a squeeze. Can’t wait for that day – for their sake, as much as any…
You can find out more about Andrew and Tracy’s Kitchen 28 takeaway options here, and check out the menus on offer right about here.
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