This is October, The month of October fest in Germany.where beer is cheap more than water. But in Sri Lanka our good government increased the beer price by 40-50 rupees.it seems not much, but if you order a beer pitcher I have no idea what is the cost. Hoping to check this today evening,
Well in Sri lanka we have a chain of beer pubs run by Lion Beers which is very known as “Machan”The Machan very similar term “Dude or Buddy” in English. It’s place to have a beer for a cheap price. Actually we are not very pub oriented nation such as British. There are several bubs in Colombo, Kandy etc.But Still Pub is not a part of life for most of average Sri Lankans.We have something called wine stores in each town,small village mainly run by some henchman of the local politicians.it look like a prison cell,fortified with steel grill work.
But out of all the liquors the beer price was comparatively cheap in here. this happened after 1994.it was ex-president Chandrika Kumaratunga and that time Minister of finance Kingsly
T.Wickramaratne were the people those who reduced the beer price claiming this will help minimize of usage of illegal liquor in Sri Lanka.The illegal liquor which is highly consume by law income locals known as” Kasippu”.
Mrs. Kumaratunga expected that people will drink beer instead of Kasippu when it is cheap. That time if I’m not mistaken a bottle of Beer came down to 30 SLR.but this was in 1994 or 1995.ten years ago 30 SLR was considerable amount.But there is no significant reduction of consuming Kasippu among local,but there is a increase of consuming beer for sure.
There was a Sinhalese drama by Rajitha Disanayaka “Hansayitath man Asai”(=I like swans too).Sawumya Liyanage did the main role and there was a dialog about reducing beer price and they drank actual beer bottles and did smoke at the stage.
I’m intention was not promoting either beer or cigarette .Except this scene I don’t remember anything special about this drama, In Sri Lankan term Hansaya, the swan has very literally meaning. If Rajitha Disanayake meant that he should have found an actress who had good looking swans. The actress of the drama even it was 1996 I remember very much she did not have “swans”.
But before all this dram happened the beer was not the cheap .It was consider as kind of expensive liquor, Local liquor such as Arrack was bit in the low end. Even those who drink beer did not mix with others. I remember I had an uncle he never drank in pubs .Most of the evening he is frowning to his beer bottle alone in his verandah. This happened mainly because those days Sri Lanka totally depending on imported beer bottles, we did not brewed beer at that time.
The first commercial of the beer as per my memory was in Sunday times Newspaper. It was promoting Lion beer. Eventually we had wide range of beer brand. Not only Lion we have Bison as well. Then three coins. But Carlsberg remains little pricey than the other brand.
The Sri Lankan culture does not encourage having liquor by women. My mother’s generation they only looked at wine, even it’s very rare occasions, and they never looked for refill. Not drinking even holding a beer mug not very accepted by our grandparents.
But there is a first time for everything. It was one of my cousin sisters who did have a beer in front of all the relations on some New Year party. That time I was about little more than ten and now she is a mother of two boys. But I remember all my aunts were looking t her with their open mouths. But my mother did not make any comment because she may have a feeling her comments might turn beck somewhere in future.
But Still I don’t drink in front of my mother.