I remember it vividly. I was sitting in the car at Canterbury Cricket Ground waiting for Lee to finish his meeting. Big ploppy tears were rolling down my face as I thought about Dad. It had only been two months since he passed so I was still allowed to be a sobbing wreck, but I was getting annoyed at myself. Dad would have hated to see me so sad and rightly so. Sitting there crying alone was hardly going to bring him back and I remember looking in the mirror thinking "Blimey, you look bloody rough, sort yourself out!"
It was as I was fixing the panda eyes and slapping on some foundation to hide the red nose -that I saw it. A lovely little yellow prosecco van drove past me. It was small and compact and I thought "I want one". My mind wandered - how lovely to have this as an additional part time business and to be able to set off evenings and weekends to give people a great time. So, out came the phone and I started googling "prosecco vans for sale".
The next twenty minutes flew by as my nose and eyes regained their normal colour, poor Lee hadn't even quite got in the car before I started reeling off the ways in which buying a prosecco van would transform our lives and how - as luck would have it - there was one for sale on Ebay! Luckily for me Lee is amazing and not only did he listen and engage - he got excited too.
The next six months were spent discussing ideas, visions and most importantly putting together a business plan so that we could apply for a business loan. This was a must - after all… we had no funds!
We decided that we didn’t want limit ourselves to prosecco. We wanted to be able to adjust to the moving trends of the alcohol market and not cut ourselves off to the beer, cider and spirit lovers of the world. We also decided against buying an "off the shelf" business too as we wanted to create our own vision and build our own business and brand. We were ready to start our own journey and create the reputation of being "South Easts number one high end mobile bar providers".
I am pleased to say that we got accepted for our Business Loan just before Christmas and we are now the proud owners of The Thirsty Bar Company Limited.
Who would have thought that in just nine months we could have organised, purchased and set up a website, developed a brand, established a limited, Vat registered company, opened a business bank account, hired an accountant and bought a truck ,horsebox, bar and stock!
We are now entering the scariest and hardest part of launching a new business - securing bookings! Any new business owner knows your first five clients are crucial to the success of your business. To be fair, we are still four weeks away from completion as we are waiting for the horsebox to be delivered and, most importantly, converted into a thing of beauty (and it is rather hard to sell a business that you have no pictures of)!
I can't help but be more excited than scared though. I’ve always been a true believer in positive thinking, the law of attraction and that you make your own luck, but I can't help but feel this journey has been powered by something much more. Losing someone close makes you to re-evaluate your life. It’s a reminder that life is not a given and highlights the importance of doing something you love.
This is exactly what Lee and I have been working towards. We have spent the past few months discussing, planning and setting our goals for the future. We are building a business that allows us to do something we love. I mean, what better way to earn money than travel around, meet new people and give them an occasion to remember by serving sexy drinks, in the perfect glass with stunning surroundings.
I personally cannot wait!
So let's raise a glass to the next nine months, here's to turning grief into drive, tears into plans and dreams into a reality.
Check out our dream at: www.thethirstybarcompany.com