A friend of mine says everyone needs a bolthole. She's dead right.
When she wants an undisturbed pint she drinks in one of the city's crappiest pubs, safe in the knowledge that no one she knows will walk in.
I also have a couple of boltholes, somewhere to escape just for an hour or two, usually after work once a week or on a Sunday afternoon.
Without a doubt, most of the friends I've made over the past 24 years I've first met in pubs. Socialising over a few pints is still my favourite thing about drinking in a pub, but there's always that other pleasure of a quiet couple of pints on my own.