To many, Temple Bar on Nørrebrogade in Copenhagen is surely a dependable 'standby' kind of place, pretty much any night of the week (and especially on weekends). A place that is very much like an old - very old - comfortable (and rather ugly) sofa that you just can't bring yourself to throw out. In fact, Temple Bar is filled with ratty sofas and chairs upstairs that they really should bring themselves to throw out.
It is perhaps for this reason that year after year living here in Copenhagen, I have resisted the urge to frequent the place. In fact, until last week, I had never even set foot there. This was not because I doubted that it was a dependable place for having a drink and a chat with a friend or two. Rather, whenever it has come to finding a place to grab a beer in Norrebro, there was just always some place else that always pulled us in. Temple Bar just seemed like it would always be there when, eventually, it was needed. And so the years went by.
So I stumbled in there the other night (late afternoon, actually) with a friend. It's about what you'd expect. Smoking upstairs, along with a lot of ratty furniture and seriously neglected toilets - one with a partially kicked-in door allowing no privacy and a sink missing part of the sink. Yes, you read that right.
But it's cosy and if you went there enough, it is the kind of place where everybody might know your name. Or come to know it, in time.