Cheers ... Royal Mail Hotel owner Andrew Cafe, centre, has a laugh with locals Bob Latham and Steve Willich.
THE houses may be mostly empty but somehow, from somewhere, Andrew Cafe's customers are still shuffling in.
It has been three weeks since Mr Cafe reopened the doors of the iconic Royal Mail Hotel on Brisbane Terrace, Goodna, and he is feeling thrilled at the crowds.
Crowds in the past three weeks have been the biggest he has seen in the past 25 years. Lots of live music and no-nonsense beers on tap have ensured the bar has filled up night after night.
His timber Queenslander hotel was filled with water up to its soaring ceilings in January. He was devastated but, from the minute access to the street was granted, helpers were everywhere.
Mr Cafe said it was the sixth flood the building had survived.
"We've had so much support. So much. So many people cleaning up and then wonderful people helping to rebuild," he said.
"I've had one carpenter in here from day one who has completely rebuilt the bar and bottle shop.
"We've even made a few improvements."
He admits the financial strain has been difficult but said: "What else can I do? We've picked ourselves up and we're feeling really, really positive."
The Royal Mail was built in the 1850s as a Cobb and Co stop between Ipswich and Brisbane.