After work this evening I changed from the vaguely smart shirt and trousers I wear every day (clean shirt each day, obviously), into the vaguely less smart jeans and t-shirt to head out for something to eat.
When I packed my bag to travel, I didn’t really think about it – and packed whatever clothes were either clean, and nearby. Therefore I have a selection of t-shirts with ridiculous wording on them, such as tonight’s offering – which state’s “I’m not lazy, I just really enjoy doing nothing”. The only problem with such t-shirts is they are of course printed in English, so if you’re hoping to slip under the radar while wandering through a busy pub in Frankfurt, you’re not going to do very well. This is of course presuming that you might run into a gang of neo-nazi idiots looking to kick in anybody obviously English – in my three weeks in Frankfurt so far I have never seen anything but polite, quiet, charming, and obviously well mannered people. I will admit that makes me suspicious (it’s always the quiet ones), but still – just me being paranoid.
So anyway – I wandered out of the hotel with every intention in the world of finding a tex-mex place marked on Google maps. The problem with this plan was I was hungry, and I had to walk past the Irish pub I visited last night – “O’Reillys”. I didn’t make it past. Before I knew it my legs had walked me into the pub, straight to the Kylie look-a-like server, and straight to a quiet table deep in the cavernous interior.
Another Irish girl wandered over a few moments later to ask if I would like a drink, and somehow my mouth automatically said “A pint of Guinness please”. She grinned, and skipped off in the direction of the bar.
While waiting, I checked emails, messages, and read the news on my phone – but was eventually distracted by the thump, thump, thump sounds of a dartboard behind me. I looked around, and discovered a single German guy throwing darts hilariously badly – they were landing all over the place. He wasn’t trying to go “around the clock” either – he was just a bit rubbish (I should know – so am I). Looking around the rest of the restaurant area, I noticed a couple of pool tables had been covered to turn them into tables, and a quiet guy sat in the corner with a notebook, and a pork-pie hat propped on his head. At a glance he looked like Johnny Depp – I wondered if he had beaten his wife up too (sorry for that – I have no time for Johnny Depp or any of his movies any more, knowing what sort of despicable shit he is).
The food was wonderful – and not what I had expected at all. I ordered a “pie”, but it resulted in a deep bowl half filled with mashed potato, and half filled with Irish stew. I didn’t really mind, because I like most things. It was hot, tasted great, and slowed down the effects of the Guinness. The second Guinness.
As the restaurant area slowly filled with people, I became more and more conscious that everybody else was with somebody – either a partner, a friend, or a group. Apart from the Captain Jack poet, I was the only person on his own in the entire bar. I messaged a close friend, and wished they were here to be an idiot with me – we could have taken part in the Karaoke later in the night, singing “Islands in the Stream” together, and brought the house down. The clientelle would have lined the drinks up for us, and carried us on their shoulders around the pub. Probably.
Eventually I finished my meal, paid my bill, and wandered out into the night once more – whistling “Islands in the Stream” as I went, grinning to myself. I must have looked like a recent release from a mental hospital.