Beer was everywhere. And everyone was drinking it – boys and girls, men and women, grandpas and grandmas. Everyone. And everywhere. From the early morning hours on the way to work til late night before bed. People were out on the streets, going each their own way, carrying an open bottle or a can of beer in hand, sipping constantly. That looked mad.
I mean I am a beer fan myself, but there should be some cultural rules to the drink too. I have no problem with drinking in the bars and pubs or a few pints at home. Hell, I can even understand enjoying a pint at lunch or comprehending some magnificent view. But running around the town, drinking from morning till night – that’s way too much.
The only exception though was my native city of Togliatti – a pleasant surprise. Municipal laws allow for draught beer to be sold only in a places that have tables, walls, and toilets. Also, drinking in public places is forbidden and enforced! The fine is 800 roubles (about $35 USD), which is a lot (yup, with average salary around $200 USD). Police patrols everywhere, not only the main streets, but everywhere and frequently.
Also, there is a federal law about beer advertising. People cannot appear in the beer ads. That has something to do with people associating themselves with those who are in beer ads. Or so they say. In reality, more restrictions on what can and cannot appear in the ads make ads more creative and interesting. There’s plenty of beer ads on TV and most of those short videos are nicely done and a pleasure to look at, even over and over again.