13 July 2016

BCSA "Get to Know You" Social (July 2016)

I was pleased to find my run of being able to make the monthly BCSA "Get to Know You" Socials stretch nicely into July. In many ways it was a wonderful night for the usual reasons but there was something very different about it too.

The similar things included the Pilsner Urquell, the Smazeny Syr, the excellent company and the conversations that grew from all that. There were a few new faces and a few less familiar ones plus the stalwarts like myself. It was a healthy mix and the conversations were the better for it.

The big difference from previous meetings was Brexit and its aftermath.

The mostly Czech and Slovak people there were shocked that the UK had voted to leave the EU and were trying to work out what it meant for them. Some were lucky and already had dual nationality, others wanted a British passport to be able to stay here and some UK people were envious of those with EU passports and wondered how to get one.

Overall the Czech and Slovaks felt sorry for us and our centuries of assumed superiority had been washed away. They were looking down on us.

Then we learned that Boris Johnson was our new Foreign Secretary and we went even further down in our friends' estimation. They were now laughing at us and us Brits there were forced to admit that they were right to do so. All pride in being British had gone.

Luckily the camaraderie was at a high level and even the Breix/Boris gloom could not blight the evening and I had a marvellous time. Most people stayed until chucking out time, 10:30pm, so I think that they had a good time too. These socials just work.

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