By Aishwarya Khanna

This article first appeared on The Elephant Journal.

PS: This is a feel-good post.

I was trying out food combinations at home and so I came up with this sexy duo of cheese spread and dark chocolate on a cracker, which I believe would taste well with whiskey. So my mind scrambled to Oban where I had my last experience with whiskey.

I decided to write about it.

Here it goes.

It was a sunny day in December and I had just arrived in Oban from Mallaig.

Just like any holiday town, Oban was tucked away in glory and circled by water. I was not really sea-sick because I was too excited to embark on the trail – from one end of the town to the other. I traced the horse-shoe shaped path to stay on dot and reached the finish point. And that took 30 minutes. That was the trail.

But despite the small size of the town, it is such a bewildering place to talk about.

Wait don’t be puzzled yet. I meant in relation to the whiskey after all – which itself is made with the water of the Oban bay.

Even though the locals are quite familiar with Oban whiskey, the tourists are slightly bewildered.

With its reputation for having one the best Scotch whiskies, there is no doubt that the best things will often be given the highest benefit of the doubt. So naturally Oban can be an intimidating place. The tourist says: Hey, I’m sure Oban must be the holiday spot of the elite so I’m sure, I don’t want to step in there.

Most people stigmatise whiskey as a pretentious hobby for the rich. We, as naive learners, connect 2 + 2 to make 5. However, individually, there are some elements of truth to both the things. First, the stigma around drinking whiskey or any type of alcohol, exists. As long as people are going to stigmatise whiskey, they will automatically stigmatise the rich. And that’s where the second problem lies: connecting every problem we have to the rich.

Yes, it is true that whiskey is presented as an elitist commodity. Yes, it is also true that the rich truly believe that it is an elitist commodity. But the smart buyers are not falling for that crap anymore. High society snobbery is soon going to dwindle because the numbers in which they exist will dwindle at some point. The market is swarming with the newest brands of whiskey players in the market. They are more energetic and approachable and unmasking the double standards of the whiskey industry.

The new rule of drinking states that it is a fun activity to be enjoyed with folks. So why can’t we just keep our confusion, our stigmas and our grudges aside about drinking, and have a good time in the bar? Do you need more incentive to change your mindset?

I got you.

Here’s another one.

We are still waiting for good things to happen to us. I repeat: we are waiting for good things to happen. No more bad days, no more failures, no more losing we say. But everyday is the same. And so, we never make that impulsive decision. We never climb Mt. Everest. We never take that road trip in Spain. And all that is understandable. But we don’t have to do everything as ordinary people.

At least we can enjoy the small things like having two cheat days in a row and still hitting the gym. We can go out twice in a week and hang out in our favourite place. We can message that crush of ours and ask him or her out on a date. We can do so little and still be happy.

I agree that there was no need for using this post about whiskey to talk about the other stuff too. But sometimes, I am so flustered by the thought of us faking it all out all the time, pretending as though our lives are so rich with love when in fact, this journey means constantly rediscovering what makes us happy. Can’t we be more creative?

Now I truly feel like doing things differently. I feel like being truly authentically myself. So seriously drink! Maybe it is raining, drink. Maybe you’re angry. Drink. Maybe you’re starved. Drink. It’s all good!

If you still looking for a reason to complain, you can always talk to me. Just hit me up! I am always ready to hear people’s problems out. I am always ready to sprinkle your problems with a little bit of laughter.

Note: In this article, the writer describes a visit to Oban in 2019.

by Aishwarya Khanna

Aishwarya Khanna covers food & drink on her website: ghee and maida. Please see this section to know more about her.

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