Viewpoint: Being half drunk

In Bavaria, it can seem as if every town and village has its own brewery. The German state supreme for the Bierfest, the local beers slay the thirst at the annual fests. Such is the beer culture that I once watched a televised football chat between Bayern Munich legends which featured them partaking of a ‘Weizen’.

Beer is culture, and while Bavaria is beer central, this is a national culture. Exported many years ago to Arenal, one particular street is far better known by its nickname Bierstrasse than by its actual name (C. Miquel Pellisa). Over-imbibing was never really frowned upon, as the cultural strand of the Bierfest had given it a certain acceptability and spawned all manner of expressions, e.g. “being half drunk is wasted money”.

It was jolly drinking. It still is. But there are those for whom there is little jolliness; only the drinking. Über-über-imbibing was excess. Enter eventually, therefore, the Balearic government with a decree, the timing of which was just in advance of Covid. The consequence, as tabloid ‘Bild’ has reported, is that the Ballermann, “the favourite party mile”, is no more. One regular visitor, now fifty, says that she and friends now have to go to bed early – there’s nowhere to dance.

There is a world of difference between drinking and excesses. “Party” is a reason for holidaying. Covid has meant rules, but even so, the government might wish to remember that holidays are meant to be fun.

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