Wednesday, 21 January 2015

Happy Hour

Did you know?  :)

The words "happy" and "hour" have been linked for centuries with different meanings attached but all referenced enjoyable social activities.  This did not necessarily include cocktails and appetizers mind you!  According to Wikipedia, in the early 1900's this term was most often associated with women's social clubs.  Later, during the first world war, it morphed into a more military term referencing smoking breaks - no alcohol!  Go figure that it took prohibition of alcohol to morph it into a clandestine, alcohol-imbibing meeting time at the local speak easy before heading off for dinner at a posh, alcohol-free restaurant!  Cocktail hours continued this after prohibition was rescinded and took on many forms.  Enter wing night, discounted drinks and happy patrons!

This year I retired and moved to a 50+ community in a small resort town in southern British
Columbia in Canada.  When fall hit we happily discovered that happy hour had arrived in southern B.C.!  Invitations flowed in to drop in for happy hour at various neighbours' homes and a regularly scheduled two-hour happy hour takes place every Friday at the clubhouse.  I suspect that Canadian residents of retirement communities take a slightly more conservative approach to happy hour - perhaps it is the cooler, wetter weather that limits the carefree street wandering of the Arizona crowd or perhaps it is just Canadians are Canadians and the snowbirds that head to the true south do as the Romans do, so to speak, and embrace the American phenomenon more readily than at home!

I find the laid back, friendly event running close to the afternoon coffee break of my stay-at-home mom days, only it is longer and usually includes wine!  I am planning to embrace this snowbird habit with impunity!  And, when Happy Hour becomes my regular afternoon nap, I will still toast my friends in the nursing home with a smile and raise cup of tea! 

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