I was recently reading this blog and some of the comments I found interesting regarding the topic of drinking during week days. Here in the UK we have a rather set drinking culture. Some people I know only drink on weekends, some I know go to the pub every day (regulars) or others, like me, just enjoy a chilled beer or two at home after a hard day at work.
However it does seem that many of the comments left on this blog give me the impression that if you mention the mere fact that your going to have a few drinks on a weekday then your deemed to be something of an alcoholic? But surely this is not the case. I love a good cold beer, I also like a nice glass of wine with food that I take the time and effort to cook but this certainly does not make me an alcoholic.
The accessibility to alcohol is much harder in Sweden than it is in the UK. You can practically walk into any food shop/store in the UK and purchase alcohol and it’s cheap. Sweden’s alcohol laws are far stricter than the UK and whilst you can purchase light beers in the supermarkets, anything stronger has to be purchased from a Systembolaget. These are state run alcohol shops that close at ridiculous times! Imagine you have had a hard day at work and you fancy a beer at home with a nice meal and your feet up in front of the TV. Well leave work early as these shops close at 6pm! In the UK any off licence will be open till around 11pm should you want to purchase anything from them.
Maybe this is a good method though. The UK has the highest level of alcohol abuse in Europe and Sweden the lowest. Pubs are extremely expensive in Sweden compared to the UK where pubs compete to undercut each other on a consistent basis. Yet I have seen the same level of mad drunkenness in Sweden as I have in the UK. No matter how they try and cap this culture of binge drinking it seems that no method is that effective. Not even having all alcohol sold by the state like they do in Sweden.
Also the Swedish people that I know in Sweden admit that Sweden has a hidden drinking culture that is never spoken of much. Many people in Sweden drink far too much at home and it’s something that the government refuses to acknowledge. The UK takes the opposite stance and tries to persuade people to cut the level of drinking.
No matter how many noses are turned up at me I will still be having some cold beers on a Wednesday and will enjoy them immensely and if I go to work the next day with a hangover I don’t care as I work from home!
Sweden is a wonderful country, a country I will soon be proud to call my home but I do feel there are some things about Sweden, like the sale of alcohol that needs to move into the 21st century.