Cheers, it’s happy hour!

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Happy hour. That glorious right of passage awarded to us adults. {I am still getting used to including myself among the “us”} Specifically, it is designed for those that have the luxury of punching the time clock at 5 PM or even the fellow who happened to take a break and meandered over to the local hot spot.

It is a crazy concept if you really dissect it. For a few hours at any given week night, one can walk away with the largest beer and appetizer for under $10. One can also spend hours among friends and strangers sharing in one common cause: to unwind. I also believe this is our excuse to be together. There is nothing better than catching up with old friends or making a weekly ritual out of happy hour. It is the perfect excuse to take a break.

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Don’t mind if I do.

To give a little more background, I travel significantly for my big kid job. Due to the nomadic nature of my profession, I find myself in a different place every day. So happy hour to me is like the afternoon special at the zoo. I sit confidently alone at the bar, while enjoying the specials and observing the locals in their natural habitat.

Monday was a very unique visit to the happy hour zoo. I was in Chicago for Monday night football. All I need to say is the Bears were playing.{BIG night for football} I have been among the locals during a Bears game before. They are so passionate and engaged it puts my New England fangirl self to shame. Lucky for me, I have a shared love for the Bears. They hold a few spots on my fantasy team. {I’ll chat more about this at the end of the season}

I see happy hour as a right of passage: a stepping stone into adulthood. It is a way for me to take advantage of the laid back environment meant to harvest relaxation. This is how I survive a busy travel season. In each new place, I make it a goal to fully appreciate the happy hour of the region.

My special of choice. Can you believe this was $8!?

My special of choice. Can you believe this was $8!?

My experience in Chicago is proof of the whole happy hour concept. It is reinforced the idea that strangers can come together with shared interests and experiences to enjoy crazy, cheap, and delicious deals. They can, in unison, cheer and support an idea, belief, or sports team.

Happy hour is one part of adulthood that I am proud to partake in. It forces us out of our comfort zones not just to satisfy  our frugality and desire to start drinking before 9 PM, but to force us to be social. It forces us to sit at the bar alone and to fully engage in the unknown and to reflect and celebrate the known.

P.S. The whole post was written from the the bar top at a Chicago brew pub in the presence of die hard Bears fans. Go Bears!

Jess (2)

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