Friday, November 6, 2009

First Friday

It's Friday, and this afternoon my husband will have a big grin on his face.  Not just because it is Friday, but because it is First Friday--the one day a month when alcohol and the workplace intermingle.  At 4:30 in the break room, nibblies--sausage rolls, mini-quiches, and chips--are laid out, while the wine bottles are uncorked and beer bottles snapped open.  Employees are invited to come together to socialize or take some goodies back to their desk.  You may want to note that the break-room is located on the 16th floor and has an uninterrupted view of the surrounding hills and bay, not a bad place to wind up the work week.
When my husband first started this job and got the flier announcing the Friday afternoon activity, he couldn't believe that his company would serve beer and wine to their employees at the work place.  It is not that Mark was a stranger to the mixing of work and alcohol, in fact, it is very common in Spain.  I know he misses those long lunches, where endless bottles of wine were served.  However, he didn't expect it at an American owned company here in Australia.
It turns out that drinking at the end of the work week is not uncommon in the Land Down Under.  Of course, not all companies put out the large spread that Mark is treated to once a month but often, at the end of the week, either drinks are served by the company or employees pitch in for some adult beverages.  We have read about it in books and seen it on Australian T.V. shows.  Also, on those Friday nights when I am left to wander around the streets of downtown waiting for Mark, I often peer in office windows and it is common to see workers around beer laden conference tables.
I have to wonder if this is one of those Australian cultural traditions that will hold strong or if it will go the way of the three-martini lunch.


  1. Hi Maya, what a wonderful treat to have. Long lunches are things I really learned to enjoy when traveling in Europe. Wish we had them here too. :)

    Have a wonderful weekend!

  2. Kathy, I also loved the long lunches in Spain--however, it was important to have some time for a siesta afterwards :)