Back to reality and so back to my occassional guide on tea and coffee shops. This time it is Rumbletums, one of the few places in Durham I hadn’t tried. My friend suggested we try it because she liked this place which I had heard varying reports of.
As we wandered down the stairs I thought ok….a bit worn looking, but it has some charm. Then we walked through the door and I have to say my first reaction was to turn and immeadiately head out. I do shiney but comfortable coffee shops designed to cater for the Friends generation or pristine tea shops with good quality oak designed for Joanna Trollope readers. This place was neither, it was clean but in a worn kind of way which I know is more popular with people like my dad.
There was a strange collection of objects around the till area which had the air of a Blue Peter bring and buy about it. Then there were a collection of prints for sale, c.1975 around the seating area. The table cloths were white and orange disposable style things rather attractive wood, metal or plastic table tops, or white linen cloths. On these tables lay laminated tourist maps of County Durham which were curled and worn at the edges, like wilting cucumber sandwiches.
This was not the place, I could tell, to be looking to buy a fairtrade caramel latte. So as it was I went for the safe option, an orange juice. Not good or bad value for money it was simply as it was.
So all in all I have to say that this is somewhere I will do my best to avoid in the future…..it simply doesn’t have what I am looking for. Yet, if my father comes to visit I will send him there immeadiately because he will love it. Rumbletums is a relic of a fast fading world which some of us are glad largely disappeared when we were children but others choose to mourn. It truly is an anti-corporate experience, but not in that modern trendy “indy” type of way.
I am aware throughout this blog post my very middle class prejudices have been exposed. Of that I am not proud, but I cannot apologise. It happens I am one of the Friends generation who escapes into either Douglas Coupland or Joanna Trollope, and my tastes in tea and coffee providers reflects that.