By Alex Overland
A Place to Sit and Watch
I’m sure you know the kind of place: one lager on tap, no head, cheap – an even number so the change is easy to handle. Beer cans and banknotes from the four corners of the world, blackandwhite photos of unremarkable shipping vessels and various brass marine instruments line the deep burgundypainted wooden walls. There’s a poster behind the bar announcing they sell “day after” hangover packages. It has a 23year age limit, even though the highest drinking age limit in Norway is 21. If you haven’t been to a bar like this, maybe your dad or uncle has at some point.
In walks Barney from “Barney and Friends”, bumbling over to the bar to order a beer (his first pick is unavailable), then to a lone table where he brings out a notebook and pencil…
I meant to make this scab about going to the local shopping center and looking at people there, but Norway is weird and everything shuts down over the holidays, so no open shopping center to go to. I deliberately went to a pub I wouldn’t usually drink in, hoping to see something interesting.
The place is perfect for its clientele: convenient central location, familiar interior, cheap drinks, the bartender doesn’t judge and everyone minds their own business.
I don’t know if the top paragraph gets that to you, but I hope it worked, at least a little. I tried to practice some of the stuff we learnt last semester, to pay real close attention to my environment. It was a cool place to describe, and that’s probably worth practicing. I’ll keep taking moments to take in my surroundings and store the impression, hopefully getting better at polishing the descriptions of these experiences. All I have to do is go somewhere unpredictable. Brixton and London is perfect for that, so here’s to taking in new and unexplored places!