Brexit win sends shocked Remain voters to the pubs
'I never felt more disappointed in my country ... I feel like crying'
In the classic British horror-comedy Shaun of the Dead, the hero, Shaun, when faced with a zombie apocalypse, hatches a brilliant plan. Go to his local pub, the Winchester, have a nice cold pint and wait for all of this to blow over.
"I think we all underestimated the bubble that we are in in London," said Chris Martin as he sipped a pint on the sidewalk outside the Marquis of Granby, a pub near his advertising office.
Like so many others, Martin isn't sure what's in store for his country in the coming weeks and months. But he says the initial shock of the referendum result is wearing off.
"I think there's an optimism, a bizarre optimism today that I didn't expect to see. I think everyone came in this morning feeling we were all kind of suicidal. And then we all thought, 'Well, we are where we are. Let's see. Let's have a go.'"
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Britain will have to negotiate its way out of a complex network of agreements, rules and regulations that have intertwined themselves into just about every corner of people's lives. No one is really sure what leaving the EU will cost in terms of jobs and trade. And so while some may be enjoying that bizarre sense of optimism, others are feeling something closer to dread.
"I was, seriously, 100 per cent convinced that people wouldn't be so stupid to vote out," said Leanne Lapslie, sipping wine with her friend Sarah Murphy at the Duke of York pub.
"It's really scary," Murphy added.
Murphy learned of the referendum results when she looked at her phone early Friday morning. She, like many other London commuters, had a lot to think about on her way to work.
"I think it's a massive error, a massive error," said an angry Rebecca Small.
The reaction, of course, would have been much different in areas where Leave dominated in the polls. For every distraught Remain voter, there was at least one Leave supporter who was over the moon. Even in central London, where 70 per cent of voters chose to stick with the EU, Leave supporters soaked up a bright June morning and dreamed of sunny days ahead.
"All the people telling us to remain were the same people telling Britain to join the euro [currency] years ago. And actually they were wrong then and they were wrong in this referendum."
Britain did choose to keep the pound and not adopt the euro all those years ago. But the pound has been taking a pounding on world markets following the referendum. Bankers in London's financial district are worried and there are fears of an economic crisis, which may or may not come to pass. Either way, the die is cast. British voters have made up their mind and there appears to be no turning back.
For Leave supporters, it's a time of boundless promise and optimism. For Remain supporters, it might be a good time to go to the pub and enjoy a nice cold pint, even if the situation they're facing isn't about to blow over any time soon.