“ah; here we go, which polite line of questioning will this guy go with”, Steve thought as his new best mate tells him how he loves Bali, but is worried about the bloody Muslims.
“Yeah, mate I’ve been to Asian countries and I love it”, my drinking companion said.
“You mentioned something about Malaysia”, he asked while nodding toward me.
“yep”; I replied.
I went to Singapore and Malaysia a few years ago Singapore was awesome, and Malaysia was fantastic. We didn’t go far in Malaysia; K.L for a few days then down to Penang”; he continued proudly.
“I liked Penang, and enjoyed going to Kuala Lumpur, it was a very interesting place and very different to any other place I’d been. You notice the Muslims there, some of it was a bit full on with the `call to pray` and everything like that”, he said to conclude while having a swig of his beer.
“um, sorry you’re not Islamic are ya mate, I mean you seem like real good bloke and um er errr” the bloke muttered apologetically.
This is when Steve thought what role or identity should he play here, this guy wasn’t offensive as such, he wasn’t angry and wasn’t that pissed that he would get too confused or upset intentionally – so he might listen politely and comprehend.
“nah, your right mate, I’m not Muslim; no worries”, Steve replied
“yeah, yeah I kinda knew that your Asian not Muslim and your drinking beer in the pub”, the bloke said with a little chuckle while having a good swig of his beer.
“well I’m sort of Asian, but mostly just a simple mongrel Aussie who loves a beer”, Steve said as he took a long slow drink of his beer.
“you certainly speak good english and seem to be able to handle your drink for a little skinny bloke”, my new mate said with a laugh.
The barman interrupted our little introductory exchange nodded to me and asked; “same again mate?”
“Yep, that be great thanks”, Steve said without hesitation.
“Na, I’ll get it, and one for myself”, the other bloke said with a magisterial flurry;
“Yeah, I’ll buy a drink for me new mate here”, he added as he gestured toward me.
“Um, Dave”, he added as he offered his hand.
Steve introduced himself and said; “Thanks, I’m ok, rather get my own, don’t want to get in a round, and I’m drinking Kilkenny, it’s a little more expensive”.
“Don’t worry, that’s cool, I’ll get one too and it’s my shout, I’ve been doing okay”, Dave said with jovial pride.
We exchanged more bar-room chit chat for while and then Dave said; “wow what is this beer, it tastes nice, but it’s heavy like drinking liquid mud?”
“It’s Kilkenny Irish Ale, it’s a bit like Guinness, but lighter”, Steve answered.
“Ha, next you’ll be telling me you’re Irish”, Dave goffered.
“Nope not quite just another Aussie with distant Irish heritage who happens to love a good yarn and a cold drink”, Steve chimed.
“ah mate; you’re Aussie as”, said as he raised his drink to Steve in a salute of solidarity.