We sat down.

J and I, we are inveterate bar investigators. I troll for new places online, and J finds new spots on his driving routes in Columbus or from fellow driving co-workers. We will sit down, map out a quick route as J laces up his converse kicks, and head off into the sunset for a bar-sit.

this particular evening we sat down in a familiar local joint. Walk-able and a place we used to frequent, back when all the bar tenders knew our names, and our go-to drinks.

This time, when we sat down, every face the servers the bartenders, the bar-backs— all unknown.

We sat down anyway.
and waited
and waited
kept waiting.

I could see the build up of impatience on J’s face. Not because he desperately needed a drink. But because for him the enjoyment in being in a bar is having in your possession what you came there for. The process and lag time is not quality time for him. Probably because his long history of working in the industry.

For me, being at a bar– if I’m not in a rush then every single part of every moment is exciting for me. I’ll admit to being a social moth. Not a butterfly who wants to parade around its beauty and claim attention. I prefer to hover next to the light, on the wall watching and listening only announcing my presence when provoked.

I smiled and patted J’s arm. He flashed an irritated smirk and picked up the drink menu, again.

This time the bartender noticed this time and hurried over. He took our drink orders, simple: whiskey on ice, and a beer. 15 minutes later we had our drinks in hand and J was ready to leave. Obviously to stay meant waiting 45 minutes between service spurts and neither of us could tolerate that.

We left after quickly finishing our unsatisfying drinks. I was slightly amused by the entire experience. The long wait and J’s growing impatience,(which oddly manifests itself as stony inconsolable silence) but also the incompetence of the bartender.

It’s a thing of beauty- the consummate bartender. The one who can sternly take your order, provide the drink, make light conversation, and leave you alone all at the same time. A rare find, and becoming rarer.

It’s just something a girl like me, who likes to order a second and third glass before I’ve finished the first….appreciates.