I have been trying to fool myself for a week or two now. It’s time to come clean. So I’ve sat myself down, made a cup of tea and I plan on telling myself the truth. You see, it turns out that just getting a food van, painting it, getting it seen to by the EHO, naming it and occasionally talking to it does not make a business. You have to feed it. Put another way, you have to feed other people. Other people found at food venues up and down the country, but not – and this is crucial – on our driveway. Yes, it turns out that many of the people who would probably want to eat Jabberwocky Streetfood spend very little time milling around in front of our house.
This seemingly obvious realisation is what has been niggling at me all this time. After a bonding session with the Beast on Tuesday we are only about |——this—–| far from being able to sell our wares legally to all and sundry. He needs a little bit of wiring and the all clear from someone who knows things about gas, but very little else. After all, while he will not be complete without his livery an absence of branding will not prevent Barny from cooking. Come to think of it, I have yet to encounter anything that can. So in practical terms, the Beast stands ready, poised to join the battle. It therefore pains me to realise, with a creeping certainty that has taken several days to accept, that we don’t have anywhere for the Jabberwocky to attack.
At first the plan was to make our grand entrance at a festival at the beginning of June. We then methodically worked through the calendar, checking dates and ruling out certain weekends on the grounds of weddings and stag or hen dos. Those remaining weekends were then designated the front line in our campaign. That first festival, apparently ignoring the rules of engagement, turned down our application. What followed was a period of quiet denial on my part. In hindsight the rejection was to be expected, and as every day passes and I learn more about this world I am inclined to think I would have done the same, but it hurt nonetheless. Consider it this way: You are a general, mustering your troops for a skirmish behind enemy lines. Suddenly, in walks the new guy. He seems keen, has some fun new ideas and likes to set fire to stuff, but when asked “have you ever done this before” he replies “umm”.
There is a first time for everything, we just need that first time. Getting that first time will mean accepting a fair few not-first-times. As long as we can get ourselves out there and get seen by these people we have a chance, but they are not going to come to us. So stop pretending they will.
That last part was for me.
It actually feels better now I’ve written that. Better, but I think I’m still going to go finish off the Ben&Jerry’s.