The with the family bit is important. That's why I managed to hit so few pubs. Britain and its crazy attitude to kids in pubs is quite a shock to someone who lives on the Continent. OK, there's been a slight improvement since the days when kids weren't allowed in pubs at all, but the situation is still far from perfect.
The biggest problem is working out which pubs do allow kids. There's virtually never anything on the outside to tell you what the score is. Apart from the occasional surly "over 21's only" sign. These are the options:
- Walk in pushing the kids in front of you and waiting to see if you're told to bugger off.
- Peer through the window to see if you can spot any sprogs inside.
- Get Dolores to ask the barstaff if children are allowed.
- Leave the kids on the pavement with a bag of crisps and a bottle of pop.
- Sit outside with the smokers.
The problem should solve itself in a couple of years. My sons are both tall. By the time Alexei hits twelve, he should be able to pass for fourteen. So just three more years to put up with this crap.