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Sadventure Completed #14: When life is just a game...

Updated: Feb 21, 2019

I was tasked with visiting Thirsty Meeples - a cafe in Oxford where people play board games to their hearts' content. All I needed was a friend - duly found.

"Just to warn you - I'm very competitive," she said.

"No. I'm competitive," I replied.

The battle lines were drawn - we'd clash on a Friday afternoon in the centre of Oxford. Sadly, not by quad - Fierce Fanny has developed an oil leak so she's at the gynaecologists the car it was.

It was quite a crusade to get there: Oxford traffic, Oxford cyclists and Oxford pedestrians, not least Oxford parking, all had to be combatted before crossing the final frontier of central Oxford. Thereupon, I had to navigate the placarded Climate Change campaigners marching against, well, me basically, as they headed in the opposite direction.

My enemy located, our conflict was to be determined by Oxford Parking Two-Hour Restriction - even though Thirsty Meeples permits guests to stay at the table for three hours (£6 if purchasing drinks). The cafe is quite cramped, but very popular. Parents with children made up around half the clientele, and lots of male students occupied the other tables. Staff were great - very welcoming, and accommodating.

Somewhat ironically, I selected Ticket to Ride - a game I had the foggiest of ideas how to play, although it had been a few years since I last played. I recalled it took around thirty minutes to play, and was simple enough to learn. Had we had more time, we could have had a field day. I had no idea so many games existed - and this is just a small sample. Games are also available to purchase.

To start the game, one needs to answer the question..."Who has travelled to the most European countries?"Only I could have selected a companion who, like me, hasn't got a clue - it'd have taken all the two hours to recollect them. Magnanimously, I let her start.

Of course, I did my usual thing of half-explaining the rules, guaranteeing an easy first win for me... Although, we could have waited for the 'Games Guide'. He, quite frankly, must have a wizard's brain to know all the thousands of games on offer. I never thought to check.

Alas, my companion is a quick learner and we were able to play much more equanimously thereafter. We left agreeing this was something we'd be very keen to do again. With a puzzle shop opening, in Moreton-in-Marsh, called Serenity Bean, we would more likely go there due to the challenges and cost heading in to Oxford, but this is not a reflection on Thirsty Meeples: it was a fantastic experience and definitely a great day out.

My only regret was not getting a ticket to ride - I couldn't for the life of me remember where I'd left my coming home took a while.

#thirstymeeples #boardgames #howtolosefriends #quadgames #oilleak #fiercefanny #sadventure

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