I’m 27 years old and I’ve never been on a pub crawl, at least, until this past weekend.
Which isn’t surprising since I’ve been a mom well before I was legal drinking age, and well, we live in Cambridge, Ont. Our one attempted pub crawl lasted all of four bars, the only four bars open within walking distance.
But my friends who live in London, Ont. invited us down for the long weekend, and since Sidney was staying with Grandma, we decided to party it up!
The Decision To Do a Pub Crawl
It all started harmless enough. Our three friends, Nick and I had a few drinks on Friday night. We stayed at our friends’ house and woke up feeling rather good, surprisingly.
After a few cups of coffee the word “breakfast” got thrown around until noon. And while none of could agree at first, we decided to go straight to lunch at McCabes.
Once settled on their rooftop patio, we each selected our meals and pints, while my friend Elyse suddenly felt left out having been the one who drove all of us.
(Totally unrelated: I had a chicken wrap with fries and garden salad. And a hornet came and bit off a piece of my chicken and flew away with it. And then it came back for more! It was really weird!)
We chatted about how we should have taken an Uber down so she could have a caesar, which lead to more talk of dropping the car off back at home and going on an epic pub crawl. But first, we had to visit the record shop.
It should be noted here that this place has an awesome collection of both used and new records. Nick and I easily spent over $100, and if we were rich I might have bought half the store!
But Saturday wasn’t about shopping. It was about drinking. So my two friends and I dropped our men downtown and took the car back home.
Things escalated quickly after that.
Our next stop was a cute little cafe downtown that also served alcohol called The Early Bird. Elyse was dying to take me there, knowing I would love their eclectic interior decor featuring scenes of horror and punk rock. She wasn’t wrong! While the beer I grabbed wasn’t my favourite, it wasn’t half bad either.
The Rules of the Pub Crawl
Although, I guess I should tell you guys the rules of pub crawl, according to my friends.
- Rule #1 – You must always order the special.
- Rule #2 – One drink per stop.
- Rule #3 – Ask the bartender where to go next, and go there. Exceptions allowed.
And that’s basically it, but I added two of my own rules.
- Cole’s Rule #4 – Drink lots of water.
- Cole’s Rule #5 – What happens on the pub crawl, stays on the pub crawl (if it’s super embarrassing or dumb).
The Pub Crawl Begins
After downing our drinks, and taking a ton of photos, we asked our bartender where to head to next, which lead us to J Dee’s Market Grill. And then Olive R. Twist, where we sat on the patio and soaked up the sun, knowing fully well that there were only so many warm days left in the year.
Our next stop was The Squire Pub and Grill, as suggested by our server. This is when things start to get messy, as the special here were Jagermeister shots. I actually quite like jager shots, but my friend needed some convincing. After all, these were her rules, too. Although, I never force anyone to drink anything they don’t want, but she must have wanted it ’cause she drank it.
The owner of The Squire was totally chill and a pleasure to hang out with. In fact, most of our servers were really awesome and hung out with us. The streets were pretty quiet, and the bars were empty, since Ribfest was just up the road, a stop we knew we’d make.
So the owner suggested we hit up Moxie’s where his friend was working, and even called ahead to get us a table and shots of whiskey. See? It gets messy once shots are involved. But we were smart, because we ordered a ton of food after that, including nachos, lettuce wraps and deep-fried cauliflower!
Eating definitely helped tone my raging buzz down. I say raging buzz, but I was actually drunk. Buzzed sounds better? Especially since it was only 7 p.m. at this point.
Our next stop? Ribfest.
I kind of went against my will. Or rather, I had no choice but to go or hang out downtown alone.
My friends were under the impression Tea Party was going to be playing Saturday night, and thought it would be neat. They were not. A couple of bouncer’s let us know that they had played two nights earlier. Ha!
After splitting a beer (and avoiding the long lineup for beer by accidentally skipping the line…) Elyse and I dipped to find a washroom, which lead us to Jacks. The special at Jacks was a pitcher of Bud Light and 20 lbs. of wings. We ordered two, and split it between the five of us. Minus Nick, ’cause he doesn’t eat meat. He just had beer.
Pub Crawl Drama (aka shit happens)
So, I think breaking this “one drink per stop” rule was where things took a turn, because we made some questionable choices after that. But, rule #5 kicks in.
Anyway, around 10 p.m. I found myself at Club Lavish, a LGBTQ friendly bar, with Elyse. Which, in all honesty, could have been really fun, except the only two straight guys in the club came around and ruined it. Why are men always ruining my club nights? Like honestly, I just want to dance with my gal pals like a fool and not give a fuck. (And I can be quite vicious when I want someone to go away. Maybe I should share a list of all the ways I’ve scared men off at the bar. The ones that have worked, and the ones that haven’t.)
The one guy wasn’t all that bad, but this other guy was a total moron.
He was drunk beyond comprehension and decided to take the empty seat next to me. He then introduced himself to my friend and the other guy and completely ignored me. Which, in all honesty, wasn’t that big of a deal.The other guy had already assumed I was a lesbian, and that was fine, too. I was just pissed that these two men were invading our personal space when all I wanted was some girl-time. But then, this stupid, rude man saw I had a mini-pitcher and held his glass out, basically motioning he wanted me to pour him a pint, without even acknowledging me. This time he pissed me off. I told him no way I was sharing and moved over as much as I could. He shrugged it off. But what’s worse is when my friend went to meet her fiance out front and he wouldn’t get up to let me pass. I literally got right in his face and yelled at him to move. And he wouldn’t even look at me. So, I asked the guy sitting across from me if he could help me out. He loudly told this guy to fuck off! At which point this idiot smacked him across the top of his head and finally left.
I was totally stunned!
I thanked the other guy, and apologized, and ran to find my friend. We ended our time at Lavish on the dance floor until I was a sweaty mess. After that, our friends took an Uber home and Nick and I stopped at two more places. We got back around 2 a.m.
Total Pubs: 13
Going on a pub crawl was a lot of fun! At first, anyway. I think we should have ended it earlier in the evening, but whatever. I don’t get out much.
The Next Day
I woke up at 10 a.m. feeling surprisingly fine. I guess all that food and water really helped!
Nick, however, didn’t get up until about noon.
Once we were up and had some coffee, it was time to say goodbye to our friends. Everyone else looked like they were hurting pretty badly, ha ha!
Nick and I arranged to pick up our kiddo and our dog and made plans to visit some friends in Paris, Ont. We hung out in their backyard, ate some snacks, went swimming and had a fire. Sidney played with their two daughters, who are close to her age. It was a really great afternoon and the perfect way to end the long weekend.
I went to bed as soon as we got home and felt super rested for Monday, our last day off. Monday was spent relaxing at home, cleaning and getting prepped for the week ahead.
Have you ever braved a pub crawl? Did you have a good time? What advice would you offer?