We love visiting breweries. So it was not unexpected that you could find my wife and me on this afternoon enjoying a blonde beer in the brewery in my hometown. It was not very crowded, it just felt cosy. The people were four elderly men accompanied by a woman of half their age. They were testing the different types of beer and the woman was sounding like someone with a lot of knowledge about this. Maybe she had been brewing herself, like my wife. She had attracted the attention of the brewer himself who was testing a new product with two other men.
At another table was a couple of around fifty with their son who seemed to have Down’s Syndrome. Except for his looks you couldn’t tell his problems. His parents didn’t have to consider this a long time before they gave him a beer too.
In came a father of around forty and his son of around sixteen. In everything it showed that this should be special for the boy. It felt like this was a divorced father and his son. This was his weekend and father had decided to make it worthwhile. So the boy was going to have his first beer. They had some discussions before ordering, the bartender gave advice. And he came with a bowl of water for the dog that the father had bound to the table. The boy shook his head, “Did you really have to take Tommy along? Now you will have to go out of the bar again soon.” The father assured him that the dog was okay; he had delivered a short while ago, according to the man. And where else could the dog have stayed?
The brewer walked up to the lady who knew so much about beer and poured some of the new brew in her empty glass. She had a good look at it, swirled her glass, nodded approvingly and then had a careful sip. She made a gesture to the brewer: PERFECT! He poured some more in her glass and toasted with her. One of the elderly men had ordered a new round for the others.
We asked the bartender for two more beers and after a short time the parents with the handicapped child did the same. The divorced father had emptied his glass and was waiting for the boy to finish his. He asked him if he liked it. The boy seemed to shiver a bit and said that it was lovely. So the man wanted him to finish his beer, so they could have another one. The boy asked his father to take it easy on him and just order one for himself. This he did.
When the beer had been delivered, the father stood up and went to the bartender. He came back with a bundle of paper towels and started to pick up something on the floor next to the dog. He went with the bundle to the toilets and then emptied his glass in one gulp. “Come, we go” he said to his son.
The boy’s glass still wasn’t finished but he didn’t complain. He unbound the dog and they went.
The other guests sniffed the air and drank their beers in great haste. We did the same. The brewer went to the brewery rooms behind the bar. The stench was really awful. Within five minutes the whole bar was empty for the bartender.