layered caves

October 11th, 2016

I haven’t posted about going out much since Ireland, because I guess I haven’t been out too much, or haven’t felt there’s been too much to note. I did learn that bars in Europe, or clubs, if they’re more than just a pub, tend to have a lot more going on in them than the bars that I’ve been to at home.

In Scotland, I had great nights out, one at a really chill local bar where they had video games set up to play and cool decor, and I met some locals and they were easy going and we drank a lot of local liquor together.  Another night in Edinburgh was spent at first with my friend drinking wine on a hill, then to karaoke, and then out with a Dane and some French boys to a couple bars, one called Sneaky Pete’s, where Zoe told me they frequented so I was excited we went, it was small and we danced on the stage, and one club that had many levels and rooms and felt like a cavernous castle. It was fun to be at a big club and go from room to room, the rooms were smaller than the multi leveled bar in Ireland.  I don’t remember meeting any locals here, but all the travelers I met were really nice and fun.

Going out in Berlin was cool because I went to a spot where the local German girls like to go listen to Afro beats and dance till 7am. I wasn’t interested in meeting any African boys but I found it so interesting and so multicultured of Berlin that these girls do. We also went to a few different neighborhoods during the week and it was nice to see how the German boys drink beer in the street before going into the bar or concert. It reminded me of Seoul because we would always pregame in the park around the bars before going into the bars. I thought all the German boys I met were really polite, truly gentleman, among Jules and her friends and among Christian and his friends, too. We didn’t go to the typical touristed clubs in Berlin, like matrix, but Jules told me that’s where German boys go to hit on tourists. And with Christian we mostly went to chill cute bars, and hanging out with his friends. Overall in Germany though, I got the impression that there’s more of an atmosphere of hanging out and drinking together as friends, rather than one of where the goal is to hook up and people are constantly scouting, but maybe that was just my experience. We did observe at Oktoberfest how some American guys were trying to hit on some German girls and were being quite shut down, but some German boys came up later and just casually sat with them and chatted. The feeling I got was that American boys prey on girls, and Germans treat them more like friends.

When we went out in Budapest, the bars were cool and kitschy and a lot of them had multiple rooms and floors and weird decor, but we didn’t find the crowds very pleasant, or the music for that matter. But I would go out in Budapest again with a local, because we just visited the popular touristed bars really.

I would definitely go out in Prague again too, because although I didn’t have any crazy nights out there, I think that’s where you find the gritty side to Prague, and all the good beer. In Central Europe it does seem that the local boys are a little more reserved and not as forward as maybe the French or Spanish boys are, but that’s just a quick juncture I’ve come too, without spending a lot of time there.

I also know that I’m older now than I was last time I was in Europe, and that will color my experience of going out differently, as well as being on my own, or even with just one other person, lends to a different kind of time out, also. Whatever though, getting some drinks with whoever I’m  with is fun, even when I’m volunteer English teaching, because people get more comfortable after a few, and the conversation changes. I didn’t think I’d drink a lot on this trip, and I definitely haven’t as much as I did in South Korea or even in Chicago, but drinking is an important part of socializing in seemingly every culture. Traveling must be so different for people who don’t partake in the local booze.