Quick Pint After Work: the mis-nomer here is in using the word "pint" in the singular. A "pint after work" can take anything from one hour to 5 or sometimes it lasts until closing time. On the rare occasion (read: bi-weekly), it even goes further into the morning in an after-hours bar. I sometimes wonder how big that pint glass really is ;)
A Couple of Pints: at least this one lets you know you're planning on staying a bit longer. But it's more complicated than a straight-forward "night out." If you don't see anyone you know, you're cool. You have your pints, listen to some music and you go home. This doesn't happen often because the Irish pubs have a knack of getting some great talent onto the stage. And if it's not a good band, a "couple of pints" makes crap musicians seem quite funny and you stay for the entertainment (and maybe to heckle). Worse, if you meet up with friends (either planned or by coincidence) there's a good chance a round of Irish Flag shots are soon to follow. And, after the Irish Flag shots, my friend, it's all over. No sense in fighting the natural order of things. Might as well settle in for the night, cause you're not going home anytime soon.
The Traditional Music Session: At first glance this pub visit is all about the music. But it's mostly about harrassing the performers into playing all the songs that you know the words to and eventually wrangling your way onto stage to play the one song you can remember drunk on the guitar. You don't want to know how many times I've heard a warbled "Wish I was back hooome in Derrrreeeeee......"
Meet Up for A Meal: As in: Were going to meet up with Neal and Iveira for an Irish breakfast at Finnegan's today. This is a sly follow up to the Saturday night-out. You're quite hungover, but the thought of rashers and Irish sausages and someone else brewing coffee for you is too much to resist. Usually meeting time is about 2:30. The meal takes about an hour. We seldom leave the pub before dark. I think you can see where this is going.
Best defence is to either opt-out of the pub evening altogether or find a pub that you like and make sure you are planting your pint-drinking butt in a pub that's cozy and friendly. And thank the Lord above that you're in Germany where the pubs have seats and not in Ireland where you'd be standing ALL NIGHT and you have no table service. Remember your favourite disco when you were 22 and it was such a pain fighting your way to the bar to get cocktails for your friends - it's like that except you're older now and the guys aren't as cute.
And you wonder why I take my knitting to the pubs with me...
On more sober news, we went to visit the house this morning - they've torn down the wall in the living room and it looks tons brighter already. They'll do the wall in the kitchen today and we can get a better look at the flooring situation - I'm really hoping we can keep the wood, I think it's quite pretty. I didn't want to mess with the garden this year, just maybe clean it up, but we've got a couple of rose bushes and I think I might at least do a little pruning. you know, just for the sake of the plants themselves...
After the visit, I dropped Dave off at work and drove the car home. It was a lot more difficult than it sounds. Apparently it's not just me that likes daily visits to IKEA, it was all I could do to keep the car on course back to the house - at least I think it was the car that was trying to take a left towards IKEA ;)
Maybe I can just make a deal with the car, that we can visit our favourite shop when I get the clothes situation upstairs sorted (that should put off shopping for a good while!)
Woe is me - I finished sorting my clothes AND the books. In one afternoon! Imagine that! It's amazing what just a scoche of motivation'll do, eh. Now I have free reign to visit IKEA - land of affordable luxury - I'll take what I can get ;)
Actually, it's just about time for me to head out the door to Finnegan's for a "Feed of Pints". Forgot to add that one earlier. It's just your basic night out where you've already called in sick for work the next day, your bedside table is prepared with water and Alka-Seltzer (specially imported for occasions like these), leftovers are in the fridge for eating tomorrow and you've admitted that this evening is going to start with the Irish Flag shots. Dress is best kept casual - don't want anything too complicated to re-fasten in the pub bathroom tonight, honey. Must remove any obstacles between front door and bed and we're good to go.
On that note, I leave you with a Fare Thee Well and a hearty Sláinte.