05 November 2008

Partying international student style

So, before france, I NEVER went out to bars and clubs, and I drank all of 3 or 4 times a year, at redneck-bonfire-in-the-backyard parties.

Thus, the past month and a half was a huge change of pace. I go out 1-3 times a weekend. The best part, is it is easy to do so without spending tons of money, so long as you don't plan to drink (a lot). Most places don't have door fees, and those that do, that i've been to, are quite small. The dance clubs are generally so busy that you can get away with not buying a drink if you don't want to. So even poor int'l students can have a good time.

There are tons of bars in one district, probably because of the colleges, and also some really good ones in Old Lille, even though it is a bit farther from the school (but much closer to me). There is a kareoke bar that I really enjoyed, it is small ( a common theme here) and has lots of music- french, american, even romanian. It's a good place for going in a group and having fun.
Nearby is the Palace, which is a dance place, a bit heavy on the techno, but really fun, and one of the few places you can get in if, say, you have green hair. The drinks are a bit expensive, although "The Palace" is huge and quite good.
I haven't been to most of the other dance clubs on the strip, mainly because one of the people I go out with most has green hair, thus, can't get in. I have been to 7th heaven, which was a good time. I have no idea how the drinks are, as I didn't even go to the bar. I went there on my birthday, and danced until I thought my knees were going to give out. It was awesome, we took lots of pictures, and goofed off, and finally walked home at 3am.

Walks home after partying are so relaxing, its quiet and so pretty. Especially on Rue Nationale, which leads to the Grand Place, and in Old Lille.

there are lots more bars on Solferino, in the bar district, but my favorites are in Old Lille.
Coming Out is awesome. S n I go there so often that the bartenders recognize us. (granted, his green hair helps. everyone recognizes him) There is good music, with a place to sit in the back, and barely room for 2-4 people to dance. It can get rowdy, which is ridiculously amusing. Right across the street is Miss Marples, a (mainly) lesbian bar, which I am going to go to one of these days. If I ever convince someone to go with me. they both get in a steady flow of people, yet are small and familiar enough to feel like the corner bar. I love it there. And they have decent priced drinks to boot.
Pop Paradise is right around the corner. It is fun. No door fee, but it is a euro to check your coat, which I highly recommend. Not a lot of seating, but a big enough dancefloor. Not a lot of techno, which appeals to me quite a bit. And there are the most interesting people there. Women and men, and everything inbetween. Within the first hour of our first visit, two transvestites came in, it was fantastic. apparently the drinks are a bit pricey (again, i haven't bought one there)

The Golden Wave is the place to go if you want to relax after partying, especially between 3 and 6. It has an interesting mix of rock (acdc and such, but some european music too). It is quite eccentric in d├ęcor. (they have some gorgeous pictures of naked she-demons). It gets loud, but it is a great place to meet french people. Especially if you smoke. The smoking room is a bit suffocating, but every time I've gone up there to keep a smoker company, at least 2 or 3 people struck up conversations with us.
The first time I went there, it was with S, before he moved into the residences. We had already gone to the karaoke bar, and the palace, and everything on solferino was shutting down. So we were wandering back towards my room (he had to sleep on my floor that night because all the public transport was shut down for the night). We kept wandering, looking for somewhere that was open, because we weren't nearly ready to go home. We finally stumbled onto a group of people near the train station, who took us to the G. Wave. They were really friendly, and we've run into them there again and again. They bought a whole bottle of this pink vodka, and shared it liberally. I didn't care for it, but they got S wasted. By the time 6am roled around, and they were closing, I was surprised he could walk home. Ah, the speeches of drunks are hilarious. We passed out and woke up at 4pm to go get a kebab, and go out with a friend for her birthday. However, we both cut things short early that night. No surprise there.

Where else? The Aussie bar is in old lille too, a big, noisy bar, without a lot of dancing space. It was fairly cool, but not my kind of place. If you like big bustling bars, check it out. A lot my friends like it. And the highlander is pretty good. But honestly, Rue Solferino has all the bars and clubs you could want.

One of the most memorabme nights was a couple weeks ago. Saturday night I went to S's, all dressed up, and we prepartied (i love my grand marnier and coke) and a bunch of french students stopped over, and a whole group of us went out.. thoroughly drunk, walking the 20-30 minutes to Old Lille. For some reason, I find it more interesting to speak french when I'm drunk. Ha. We had more fun walking to the bar than we did in them. That night ended entirely too soon.

I don't know what else to say about this. It's fun, and awesome. Come here and try it :)

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