A strange thing happens when you become an adult. After 18 years of socialising just fine without a drink in your hand, it suddenly becomes a near impossibility. As a child, adventure playgrounds, bowling alleys, swimming pools, indoor play areas, magicians, go-carting or simply a few toys provided endless pleasure.
After 18 years of training, you would think socialising would be easy. And yet virtually no adult activity is completely devoid of alcohol; even most cinemas have a bar, and pitchers of beer are delivered straight to your lane at bowling alleys. We need it, supposedly: to loosen our tongues, to dance, to simply chat with people we may have known our entire lives.
Why is socialising so difficult without alcohol?
Some might argue that it’s not difficult without alcohol, it’s just better with it. But is this really so?
Some of the happiest, least inhibited and purely ‘high’ experiences of my life were as a child, running round, ecstatic on life, enjoying myself. On nothing stronger than juice (and maybe a few high-sugar treats).
I think as adults we can regain this natural high. If we leave the bar and embrace other social activities, there is a world of fun we might never discover if our only idea of pleasure is a glass of wine or six.
Here are a few ideas for dry social activities:
1. Go to a theme park.
No need for alcohol when you’re already screaming with laughter (or terror). Plus beer is not a good idea when there’s a good chance of seeing it again, this time on the way up.
2. Go to a spa.
There is nothing quite as decadent as spending time with your friends (or by yourself) in beautiful surroundings while a professional gives you a massage and brings you cups of coffee. There really is no need for any kind of drug once they’re done with you.
3. Go and see a comedian.
I’ve said it before here, and I’ll say it again. Drinking is just an attempt to inject the same pleasurable chemicals into our brains that we can get from, say, laughing. The difference between laughing and drinking is that laughing doesn’t make you feel like Black Sabbath are performing to a Wembley crowd in your skull . (Try and find a comedian that makes you laugh, th0ugh, as opposed to making you laugh at how bad they are).
‘Nuff said. Do it n0w.
5. Play football/netball/tiddlywinks/whatever floats your boat.
Playing sport is a great way to get people together, and also gets those endorphins flowing (see a natural high? for more).
6. Throw a dry dinner party.
Play great music, serve great food, and keep the glasses topped up with Schloer. I guarantee everyone will have a great time.
7. Go walking in the countryside.
Good friends, open air, beautiful countrside, ideally a bit of sunshine. Perfect, right? A good steak pie afterwards doesn’t hurt, either.
So there are just a few ideas to get you started. Please comment below if you have any others.