It's the Marple Food and Drink Festival this week. There are loads of events throughout the week. The big day is next Saturday, where stalls will be offering different local food along Market Street.
The Samuel Oldknow Pie Competition will also be taking place. There is a prize for the best pie from a bakery, or professional kitchen, and a seperate domestic award. Last year, a pork and fruit pie from Grenaby Farm, a bakery on Market Street created a piece of rare beauty. Sadly I have relinquished my judging role this year in deference to the superior pie pallett of my good friend Ian Wolfendale.
I've kept this low key, but it has now been 4 weeks since I had an alcoholic drink. I feel so much better and haven't had any cravings at all. In that time I've been to football, corporate rugby, a pub quiz and I've been OK with abstaining. I haven't missed it at all. I had also developed some expensive tastes for Amarone, so I don't feel as light of pocket either.
But food, and the appreciation of its subtleties, is possibly something one appreciates with age and wisdom. We are rather blessed here with traditional shops run by people with passions for good produce. My cheese tastes are now influenced by the helpful young man in All Things Nice deli. I can't kick this habit at all and a Carr's Water biscuit smothered with Shropshire Blue is a taste to behold.
The lads at Whites butchers are full of good ideas too. Some of them the kids even appreciate.
I am lucky to like food and not to have bloated in my sedentary early middle age. I bow to the sheer will power exercised by one of my friends round these parts. He has given up booze and is also on a major crash diet. He's lost 3 stone, looks amazing for it and is on course to to lose another 2. I couldn't do it.