I accept the gauntlet, Pub Bros!



Here's to our Pub Brothers. Sante!

I apologize up front for today’s post but when Pub Brothers  throw down a gauntlet I cannot let it go unchallenged!

For anybody that has gotten past the first sentence and is going to continue reading this I feel I must give some background information. Five years ago, a year before we left Geneva, things were very up in the air. All we knew for sure was that we would be kicked back to the home country before the year was up. Anders didn’t know where he’d be working, in what capacity, what division, and we didn’t know where Andrew would be going to university. Things were a little too undecided for my planner husband. I thought that a good way to get him to open up about his feelings was to ply him with alcohol. So every Saturday or Sunday we would go to a pub in Geneva. It took us a while to find one that we liked but in the end found one that was a hole-in-the-wall authentic Irish pub. It seated about 18 people and they did not have food, just salty snacks. Sometimes I had an agenda especially as it got closer to moving and we knew what was happening and other times it was just to talk and listen. We did this just about every single weekend. It worked. Anders loved it and Pub Day was born.

Flash forward to Cincinnati and we continued it. At first there were things to discuss about our new lives, new job, and adjusting to life as empty-nesters. After a while it just became the thing to do on a weekend, every weekend. Sometimes we would invite friends and those were usually the longest Pub Days. We actually had one last 7 hours, thanks to C&D. We never really hit on one pub that duplicated the one in Geneva and mostly because they ALL had TVs. If a bar has a TV in it it’s a sports bar not a pub. But we found a few that we liked.

A very good friend of ours, FFF (fine Finnish friend) moved from Geneva to Cincinnati. His fiancée/now wife was living and working in Washington, DC and the closest he could get to her in the States was Cincinnati. It was our gain. I had spoken to FFF a few times in Geneva and thought he was an interesting guy. We were very happy to have him come to Cinci. He gave us a taste of Europe and we became very good friends. Anders and I would have him come for dinner a couple of times a month so he could have a home-cooked meal, although he’s a fine cook himself.

Glenfiddich 12 year, not the greatest but it's all we got!

Then W², one of our dearest friends from our Albany, GA days (20 years ago) moved to Cincinnati as well. He too was  by himself for about 8 months. His family stayed behind to allow his youngest to graduate from HS. Soon we were having him come for dinner often. The four of us got along just fine and if I didn’t cook dinner we went out to eat. That’s how the whole Pub Brother thing got started. Anders and I were having Pub Day on the weekend and Pub Brothers during the week with W²and FFF. It then evolved into drinking and appreciating Scotch. I think I speak for all four of us when I say that some of our best Pub Brother memories were sitting on the front porch in Cincinnati, sipping Scotch out of bee glasses, and solving the world’s problems. When FFF snagged an amazing apartment we had very pleasant evenings doing the same in his garden. Now I’m getting choked up just thinking about all the great times we had and I know that was not what you both intended!

So the whole reason for this blog is that the 2 remaining US-based Pub Bros were having a Scotch tasting in Cinci and wondering why my blog didn’t mention them and how I missed them so much that I had to find a pseudo replacement for them. Well…I am here to tell you that I did. Ha! I found another orphan just like you two. J is in GZ on a split family until this summer. We have taken him under our wings and been to a few of the local haunts. We started at Wunderbar, the Hofbrau Haus in GZ. Don’t be jealous. There is no biergarten. We try to get together with J once during the week and once on the weekend. He’s not even a P&Ger! Now that I have my household goods I can start cooking for him too. Just like I did for both of you.  He is a great guy and you will have a chance to meet him when you come. You’ll see for yourselves that under different circumstances you would accept him as a fellow Pubber. The different circumstances being that he didn’t live in GZ and neither did we for that matter. You’re right, he’ll never replace the original Pub Bros!  We don’t even refer to ourselves as that but we do like J a lot.

I accepted your gauntlet, was there any doubt? You both know how much I love you and miss you more than I can say. Now I’m getting choked up again.

PS – Felicitations to FFF and M.


About vikarenously

I am an ex-pat living in Guangzhou, China. I am married to the man of my dreams who has indulged my love of travel by working hard enough to snag two international assignments. Oh yes, I also have two amazing children who accompanied us on our first one to Switzerland and are now mature and responsible adults which makes it so easy for us to experience this adventure as empty-nesters. Experience it vicariously with Karen.

2 responses »

  1. Karen your posts are one of the high points of my day! Maybe you should have been an author! I forward them every day to Rich’s email and he is loving reading them. Keep up the good work. I almost feel as if I know everyone you’re talking about and if I close my eyes I can see exactly where you are living. I can’t wait t read ALL your adventures. You may just have to keep this writing up when you come back state side!!! Love you!!! 🙂

    • Thanks Mary, you’re so kind. We always knew that though. I’m glad that you and Rich enjoy reading the blog. Everything is so new and exciting but I keep waiting for the day when I don’t have anything to write about. I think I’ll just have to go on exciting trips to make sure that doesn’t happen 😉 Love to all in MD.

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