For me culture is normally something found in a Petri dish. Though I don't do much microbiology nowadays I occasionally dust off a loop, and I still look back fondly on the time I spent with bacteria. The excitement of finding Salmonella, or acid-fast cells on a slide. The wondrous heamolysis of beta-haemolyic Strepotocci or the many charms of Pseudomonas. The melted wax colony morphology and seagull shape of Campylobacter. The mucoid capsule of a good Klebsiella. I could go on. Delights one and all. But where was I? Oh yes, Gravesend.
Thanks to some friends I occasionally get a dose of high culture and find out that I am not a complete philistine. So it was that I visited Gravesend to see an art exhibition on a lightship. Dead good it was too, Weird mind, but good.
Visiting a new town also provides some prime ticking opportunities, and Gravesend was no exception. Close to a closed pub is The Compass micropub, occupying a site formerly used as a estate agency. I think that makes it a points victory for the forces of righteousness.
Though it's not a micro as some pubs I've been in, it doesn't take many people to fill it up, though there is another room out the back. The beers included Gadd's Dogbolter, a beer I once made myself very ill on when I was a student. Some people may consider of 5.6% ABV or more sessionable but I'm not one of them.
The next pub The Three Daws where I drank mild, but this was no session beer either at 4.9% ABV. It was delicious though, so it's a shame I can't remember who brewed it. Cracking pub too.
We called in at 'Spoons for some food, and had a maudlin drunk latch onto us. Occupational hazard of going to the pub I guess. The poor bloke had suffered tragedy in his life and obviously felt the need to talk about it.
A tactical withdrawal saw us back at The Compass where we got the back room to ourselves. I had a great time visiting Gravesend, catching up with old friends and going to great pubs really does have a lot to recommend it.