I cannot explain what a spiritual home Take 5 Cafe Bar is to me. I first started going there over ten years ago when it was the bar to Cinema City. Relaxed Saturdays spent nursing cups of coffee, lazily absorbing newspaper text and people's lives, maybe a good book or poetry. Sometimes writing obscure observations or sketching a passing frame. There have been few places in my life where I can be so me - nurtured by the positivity and great atmosphere of the place. There is a background buzz of creativity and culture - as if you were standing beside a hive of bees. Although on a Saturday night it still gets a few drinkers unaware of the cultural milieu that surrounds them, overall the customers are an ecletic mix - touched by the energy and positivity of the place.
But then you get to the staff - they are like family ( an assortment of familiar photos taped to the wall)- engaging, interesting and personal. It takes very little for them to know you and even less for you to like them. And don't get me started on the two lovely Davids...
Its location now just down from Tombland is slightly less architecturally prestigious than its former medieval hall - but the space is great and, bar slightly yucky toilets, feels very much like before with utilitarian tables and chairs, stripped wood floors and walls bedecked in art and photography - unpretensious but aesthetically pleasing.
Now I go more for the night life - somehow drinking or eating there is more fun than anywhere else and their vegetarian options are great ( their less vegetarian options go down well with others too).
So I raise a glass to Take 5 and thank God she was spared from the elegant understated makeover Cinema City had in mind for her. Maybe a lazy Saturday is on the horizon soon.