Dive Bars, the Narnia of drinking

London has been trying to get the speakeasy and dive bar scene going over the past year or so, but it is all a bit yuppy and expensive. Not really so hidden and hard to find. My American friends have snorted derision on our attempts to be divey and dirty, saying it will never compare with what they have back home. Turns out they are right and we should stick to what we do best; gin cocktails, cucumber sandwiches and sarcasm.

Tonight I had plans to meet the fabulous Colene and she suggested the Narrow Lounge. Being a newb, I dutifully looked it up on the repository of all information, Yelp. Good thing I did, because walking up the dodgy part of Main Street, thinking Google Maps is having a laugh again would not have been much fun. So I was more amused than surprised to see this was the entrance.

A hipster walks into a club that you’ve never heard of before.

If you squint, you can see that rusty sign reads Narrows. The hipsters, they love a bit of intrigue, don’t they?

Don’t be alarmed, probably no-one is going to kill you here. The funny thing is, at the bar next to me was a couple clearly on a first date (internet hookup?). Nice choice, buddy. She is never calling you again.

But this place is very cool, very dirty and divey. They have moose antlers on the wall, some kind of stuffed bear head and you can dance on the bar, if you wish. If you are brave enough to eat here, they serve warm pretzels, their Mac and Cheese is famed and I want to come back for the peanut butter pie. (Ahem, and some bar dancing).


Sunny Saturday

Hey, sunny Saturday, good to see you! After the week of rain we had, it was beautiful to be able to see sunny skies, and while the yoga studio was calling, I went for a moochy pooch on The Drive instead.

The Drive, for all you non-Vancouverites, is the mecca for hipsters and shopping. For me, it’s a dangerous place to be with my credit card. Today I popped into The Barefoot Contessa and nearly bankrupted myself. Visions of pretty dresses dance in my head.

East Van believes! And the sun obliged.

JJ Bean, if hipsters had a mothership, this would be it. The baristas are adorable peeps with fun hats and sweet smiles. Everyone working here has a quirky haircut, big black framed glassed and tattoos everywhere. They are nice though, not at all as douchey as the ones on Main, and they make a damn good coffee.  And chocolate chip zucchini muffins. This branch has great seating, including some bar seats that wrap around vintage machines, helpful for having a chat, if you could engage a hipster. On the downside, as I was trying to chill out, a crazy homeless lady came in and had a bit of a scene. Oh Vancouver.

Behold, Dutch Girl Chocolates. Uh oh, this place could get me in trouble. As I stood snapping this picture, a random creepo stopped to say I looked beautiful and did I want my picture taken. Hand my iPhone to a passing stranger? I’d rather cut my arm off.

Love the inside of DGC, lots of old fashioned sweets, jar of candies and artisan chocolates.

What I love about The Drive is all the seating outside cafes and bars, they really encourage the community vibe of the area. #EastVanLove

New dress. And I already ate the fudge, because the mean dentist lady made me upset.

I love polka dots. And going out without a coat. Woot for summa, bitches!