Sitting at Tre Vänner, the pub on Svandammsvägen, out the other Midsommarkransen T-bana exit, and 2 minutes from my apartment. Only been here a couple of times before, lastly with the couple I rent from, after I got the keys from them in March 2014. I had no food, or alcohol at home, so decided to come sit, eat, drink, and write. Awful fucking place.
The place is busy, but not packed, and I put my coat at a table for 4 in the corner, trying to find a place out of the way. As I stand being ignored at the bar, a group of 4 comes in. There are other tables available, but the waitress, still waiting for me to amass the required times of being ignored before I get served, decides they must have the table I was going to sit at. Maybe there’s an actual reason, but like many a State secret, it is withheld from me. Possibly for my own protection – like the paper seal on the hotel toilet seat.
Nonetheless, I quickly assess the situation, volunteer that it is indeed my jacket (which must of confused her, since heretofore she thought I was invisible) and offered to move to the bar. The response? A thank you, a how kind of you, a hint of explanation? Nope.
“Vi tar det.” (We’ll take that.)
I find a perfect little spot at the bar, in the corner, my back against the wall, isolated. Where I can write, and observe, and not have to interact with this group of pub staff and regulars I have kindly come to quickly regard as cretins.
The place is nothing like my regular local, the favoured Southside, where I’m made to feel good about myself, against my will and better judgement. Where I relax, and chat, and socialize, and have grown to be spoiled with kind and efficient service by a group of staff who make you feel it’s their absolute pleasure to serve you, and who seem to look forward to seeing you again.
But by and large, the Southside is a shitty place to write. It’s like trying to write at a gathering of family or friends. But this miserable little hole, that seems to begrudge its customer’s existence, and whose customers respond in kind. Where nobody gives a shit what your name is – it’s perfect for writing. I’ll definitely be back.
One thought on “Two Locals”
I can see the benefit of going to a place where no one gives a shit about you. Sometimes you just want to be ignored, and Swedes excel at that. Not all Swedes, mind, but I’ve been to a place like that. The Palace in Gothenburg. My colleague and I decided that the Dubliner was too noisy and crowded to have a conversation, so we ventured down Avenyn to this newly reopened place at Brunnsparken. It was like a tomb on the inside, no one sitting at the bar or at the tables, so we sat at one of the tables and were promptly told that the table was reserved. Fair enough. We moved over to the bar, and were ignored. The bartender did not say a word nor made eye contact, just stood there polishing wine glasses until my colleague spoke up. We ordered our drinks and had a nice chat in a quiet and empty room, then we got up to use the restroom, leaving our half-finished drinks on the bar and our jackets on our seats. When we returned, our drinks were gone. The bartender thought we had left, didn’t notice or didn’t care that we had left our coats on our seats. We didn’t bother protesting, just headed directly back to the noisy, crowded, but far more hospitable Dubliner.