Anyway, back to business, and my first brush with the outside world came last week, when I attended a meeting of regional and local ale brewers who spent half a day discussing how cask ale might be promoted more bullishly and effectively.
The first thing to share out of this was the latest news on the first ever National Cask Ale Week, which starts on 6th April wherever you see this logo, and runs over Easter. What's special about this is it's not just an initiative by CAMRA or Wetherspoons. Organised by Cask Marque, it has active support across the entire beer and pub industry, with major pub cos, the Daily Telegraph, various celebrities and (to date) over 5000 pubs joining in, as well as the aforementioned stalwart cask ale champions.
Full details are here.
The idea is to recruit a million new cask ale drinkers over the course of the week, and I think they'll do it. Whatever happens, this kind of big idea, with support from so many bodies, is exactly what the brewing industry needs.