So, lets get one thing straight; I don't go out a lot. Its not that I'm Agra phobic or anti social and I'm not talking about down the park. I'm talking down the pub.
I used to drink a regular amount, sometimes more than the regular amount maybe, but I was never an angry or regularly annoying drunk. No. I quit because I was happier when sobber, I came to hate the loss of control and lets face facts, I used to drink because I was shy around new people and I hated it.
Now I no longer need the crutch and you know that's great for me. Other people can drink and I'm cool with that too. You don't need the 'crutch' its just you like getting pissed. I get it. Its cool.
So there I went, heading to Brighton by way of car, zipping towards a night promising great music and laughter. Perhaps it wasn't always going to go that way for me but oh well. Screw it I went anyway. What could I do? It was my little brothers birthday.
We hit the bar (his local), a small corner pub built on its reputation for live music and to be honest you'd be hard pressed to swing a cat in the joint, and yet, it is a very friendly place. Picking up the first coke of the night the band were warming up and doing their sound checks in the corner and they were amazing, I've seen them before and they're top draw. The Mountain Firework Company. I've raved enough about them on twitter.
The band left to get a bite to eat and we checked out the reserved tables for us, yep, it was his birthday and so he had a whole corner of this local music Mecca all sewed up. Pretty neat huh? Well the many faces arrived and all started swinging and bang, in walks 'Sorry.'
If you read this blog regularly then maybe you recall the post? Well in she comes, looking healthy and its big smiles and to be honest, it was a bit weird. No, not romantically dangerous (obviously not) just weird. See, we were close and then not for many, many years and then she's right there and well, it was weird.
Moving on. I hit the back wall and got a seat and as people got hammered around me I waited for the gig to start. Now I am not an anti social person, but I wasn't drunk either and it became fairly clear I was a fifth wheel, perched against the wall, out of the action. I considered this as I sat not really mingling, waiting for the gig to start still and thought 'Why am I here?'
Simple answer, to show my face at my bro's birthday bash, bit more complicated answer? To hear the music, a band I love... and to show my face at my brother's bash. ;-) So was I that bothered if perhaps I wasn't the light and soul? Not really.
The gig started and the first act was just awesome! Brilliant! Small bar, big blue grass sound, magic. The intermission hit and the bar emptied and out they all piled to have a fag and a laugh and I joined them. All good. Still sorry and me are well and truly avoiding each other.
Second half the crowd got animated and led by my bro there was much dancing and falling about, which kind of killed the atmosphere of the small room band thing, but there ya go. It was his shin dig, the band was booked for him, go for it dude!
Come the end of the night we congratulated the super awesome band, mingled a bit and decided to head out fairly quickly. Driver (a great chap) went and got the car, I bumped into Sorry and we chatted for a brief time and it was time to go.
Now it was good to see her healthy and that in itself is something wonderful but it was clear I'd changed a fair deal and she was perhaps like her old self only with the volume turned up. We just didn't seem to be compatible any more.
That's not a sad thing you know. It's not. It's true that in life people change. Some folks say that people don't, but I think they do. Life changes you. Under your skin you learn and you become more comfortable, if you're lucky, and maybe sometimes it works the opposite way and you become more guarded because you've been kicked in the nuts too many times. But people do change.
So I had a good time. My Bro had a good time. Sorry had a good time.
Perhaps though this week has been spent reflecting on what 'those days' were like and whether I miss them? The clear answer is that I wouldn't go back and change them, but I'm glad they are gone.
I like 'me' a lot more nowadays.