As I write this, it is a Friday evening in an empty office in Brighton. I'm working in IT, third party for the MOD.
The latter half of the sentence is just as exciting as the first. Not very. But, here I am, excited anyway.
Tomorrow is the soft launch for Yellow Yacht. If you told me a year ago that I'd be leaving the security of a 9-5 job and moving back in with my parents so that I could open my own mobile bar business, I wouldn't have believed it but I would have thought that it seemed like a nice idea.
I've always known that I wanted to work for myself but was never sure what said work would be. I knew it wasn't IT. Charity maybe. Housing maybe. Consultancy maybe. I hadn't considered hospitality. Still, I'd often say to friends...
"If I had a bar, I'd personalise it to suit my customer and make it accessible to them"
"If I had a bar, I'd prepare the drinks so that my customers wouldn't have to wait"
"If I had a bar, I'd want to try be as environmentally friendly as possible"
"If I had a bar, it would be mobile and collapsible for easy set up"
"If I had a bar, I'd provide cocktail takeouts"
"If I had a bar, I'd call it 'Yellow Yacht'"
And then one day, on a drive back from seeing friends in Oxford, one of my best friends turned to me and said "Why don't you just do it?".
I couldn't argue with her. It never occurred to me as an option but all it took was the question and all became clear to me. And my thoughts turned to...
"How do I get my personal license and how much does it cost?"
"How will I find a supplier that meets the values I want to uphold?"
"How can I bring additional income into the business?"
"Will my brother be able to do the logo for me?"
"What whiskeys and rums will I stock?"
"How much can I do by myself?"
"What materials could I use?"
"If not now, when?"
And so here I am, after months of preparation and research, sitting in an empty office, excited to be hosting my family and friends for my soft launch party. All in less than 24 hours.