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Page 51

Near and Far

Jamie Jones of WhirlAway Travel explores some travel options abroad and highlights their local counterparts

Now that Dry January is behind us, February is a great month to warm up after a long day of working with a cocktail or pint. While the exact origin of the term “Happy Hour” is a bit foggy, there is some correlation with Prohibition and imbibing a few drinks before going out to dinner. West Chester is full of bars and happy hour specials targeting the college crew, the suits, the laborers and the beer and wine aficionados. I’m always on the lookout for the perfect happy hour hang, and I suppose I always have been. As a child I have fond memories of sipping cherry-filled Shirley Temples on Friday evenings at the Marshallton Inn. It was routine every week. My parents would meet their friends at the Inn’s cozy bar. They had a spot on the corner, and sometimes they would tuck me in at the bar near the door, or I’d perch myself in the deep window sill on the lookout for new arrivals. I vaguely recall a fireplace somewhere in that building. Across the parking lot was the Oyster Bar, now Four Dogs Tavern. Occasionally, the bartender would order a burger for me while my parents enjoyed one last drink. I grew up and later worked as a coat check in that bar, and then at the Oyster Bar into college. My mom still stays in touch with her Happy Hour friends who all had a part in raising me. Fast forward a few years to my mid 20s. I was at that weird stage in life fresh out of college, working two jobs and hanging out with my coworkers. Jitters Sports Bar became my spot, my comfort zone, and coincidently the place where I would meet my husband. Not quite as intimate as the Marshallton Inn, Jitters was the melting pot of bar goers. Police officers, hippies, lawyers, laborers, and in-the-know college students would come together to listen to good music and get heckled by Robbie the bartender, a legend in the West Chester bar scene. To this day, when we go out for a rare date night, we always end up at Jitters as it brings a sense of comfort and home to us in this growing town. During my travels a few places have stood out in much the same way, but there is one that we recently visited during a trip to London that hit close to home. My parents found a local pub years ago, down a small street in the Mayfair neighborhood of London, that they would always rave about. A local haunt with low, woodbeamed ceilings, shelves around pillars just wide enough to rest a pint, low tables with wooden stools to rest weary legs and a cricket game on TV, this particular Kings Arms welcomed the suits, laborers and our family for a cold brew and a brief moment in which to imagine my dearly departed dad feeling right at home reminiscing about a day of exploring London with my mom. Pubs both near and far evoke memories of times past. These days most happy hours are spent with my favorite neighbor at a kitchen table, or during warmer months in our driveway so eloquently referred to as The Verandah. When we get the chance, we venture to a place that takes us back in time, to childhood, singlehood and even to places that we can call our pub away from home. —jjones@thewcpress.com

FEBRUARY 2020 THEWCPRESS.COM

51

Profile for The WC Press

The WC Press Digital Issue - February 2020  

Voice of the Borough

The WC Press Digital Issue - February 2020  

Voice of the Borough