Thursday, October 22, 2020

New Normal: Cocktails in Quarantine

 I didn't go out at all for the first 6 months of quarantine. 

I had been prepared for two weeks. That's what I thought "quarantine" meant. But then two weeks became months and months became infinity, and when I heard about a new outdoor cocktail bar opening up that serves Pina Coladas in whole pineapples, I went right for it!

I got together we a good friend I had not seen since December. We were supposed to meet at our favorite bar in March to catch up on my recent trip to Ethiopia, but the bars shut down one week before our scheduled date. We waited and waited and waited for some kind of re-emergence, and our opportunity finally came when we met at Tropicale in August.

It was a glorious summer day, the kind of Portland summers one looks forward to all year. And when we arrived at the bar it was 4:00pm on a Thursday and there was hardly anyone in line and plenty of tables open. (The same could not be said when we left at 6:00pm - the line of 30+ people stretched around the block and folks had to drink their cocktails standing for lack of seating). 

Of course I had to order the Pina Colada in the whole pineapple, which was amazing and thankfully not too strong. I also ordered a spicy margarita which is my new favorite drink in the whole world. When I decided I still had not drank enough, I went back in line and ordered a Negrete - which is basically a Negroni with Mezcal, two of my other favorite things. 

This was the first time since the pandemic started that I ate in public, drank in public, saw something who I wasn't related to, and otherwise felt like a normal human being. I will forever remember this glorious day for the feeling of freedom and gratitude it inspired. 

Waiting in line to order
the seating area

More seating area
My new "Look"

Drinking their excellent margarita
The whole pina

the spicy margarita
the beautiful pair of cocktails

tacos and chips with guac
second drink: negrete

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