Iranians are a fun group to drink with or so I was soon to discover. I had been convinced to go to Nashville on the 4th of July weekend by a good friend. They wanted me to get out of my small aparment and broken down arm chair to enjoy something different for a change. While I’m usually reluctant to leave the comform of my small apartment, I knew they were right. I have been working since the new year without much time off or change in scenerey. So I packed my overnight bag and hopped in the car for what I couldn’t have none was going to be a long drunk weekend.
The drive wasn’t bad. A few hours of satellite radio, winding mountain roads and before I knew it I had arrived in a town a great many people were either trying to make it to or make a name for themselves in it. I can honestly say the first day was uneventful with a light dinner and more than a few cocktails at the roof top bar of my hotel. That being said the more than a few dirty martinis did help the conversation flow more smoothly with the six other people in a surprisingly empty bar for such a metropolitan town the day before independence day.
My first full day was spent waiting in line to see gilded cars and studded suits in the country music hall of fame. Followed by yet more food and drinks and an even more quiet night as I listened to the whistle of fireworks from my hotel room having passed out watching Netflix like oh so many times before.
Determined not to let my final night go to waste I spent the day seeing what was left of the tourist sights, taking the pictures of the family trips I had never taken when I was a kid. Mostly because I didn’t like my picture taken and we didn’t go on trips. After I had made it to respectable Christian hour I started at my first bar not more than a tenth of a mile from my bar. Encouraged by my strong constitution and peer pressure from my friend, our late lunch was more liquid then solid. Feeling thoroughly courageous I marshaled on to the next bar. This one smoky and filled with the sweet aroma of of Cuban tobacco that had been liberated to Nicaragua to make some of the worlds finest cigars. My next three or five hours disappeared into long tales of NWA and how great America was.
With a powerful thirst and not as strong legs I made my way confidently to an even closer brewery. However, I stayed only for a beer before a rather heavy set woman asked me to leave her and her friends alone. I may have said more than a few pro American things that such a metropolitan crowd could not handle. We will talk no more of her. May her children be born naked.
My legs steadied now after a few moments rest at that brewery, my friend and I made our way back to our hotel. While I had my heart set on the rooftop bar they were feeling the weight of world on their shoulders and the many drinks playing with their lower intestines. We parted ways as I caught an elevator to the top and they headed down to bed. Once up top I grabbed a cold martini with extra olives and ordered some meats and cheeses to fill my stomach less I feel the weight of my drinking in the morning. No sooner had the board of delights arrived then an older Iranian couple with their younger daughters sat down a few seats from me. I correctly guessed their home of origin and they were delighted anyone could guess it let alone in one try. I offered them some of my food and offered to buy them drinks. Soon we were toasting the return of the Shah. The father and I talked about the old days when Iran was Persia and how good life had been, while the mother kept questioning if I was married or had a girlfriend while she casually glance back at her daughters. From the slight death glares and looks of disdain I could tell their daughters were used to this routine and had no love for me in their hearts. Just as quickly as they had arrived they were gone again. The father insisted we meet again so he could buy me a drink and with a handshake and a hug away they went. I watched his daughters walk away far longer then they had cared to glance at me.
I would become more international as the night drew on. I encountered two sisters from Uganda and after more than a few more martinis I would be kissing both and proposing marriage to another. Exchanging my hat for a kiss and buying drink after drink as we talked of populating Uganda all over again.
My night would end where it started. At he bar. It was almost empty and the only person that seemed more drunk than I was the bartender. Their were two couples that remained. I came to find out one was a woman and her gay best friend. While his name escapes I remember him far more pleasant and kinder than his lady friend. Being drunk as I was and so full of love I tried hitting on her. She insisted she only dated real men, manly men, strong men. Undeterred I insist on my masculinity only to spill my drink and end up the laughing stock of the bar. Having had my fill of liquor and laughter. I shrugged it off. Called her a few choice words under my breath, paid my bill and left. Most of that nights contents would end up on my hotel room floor to the dismay of my companion.
Sooner or later the sun comes up and after a night like that it leads to an unpleasant morning in the bright light of day. Hungover that I was I shower and changed. packed my bags and hoped in the car for the long ride back home. As I sat driving with the radio low to keep my migraines at a bay, embarrassed, sick to my stomach, sweating and tired I finally cracked a smile and laughed a little. When my friend asked me why I was laughing the only thing I could think of was, “It may be a strange thing to get drunk with strangers but heading back home now it might be a damn sight worse to be sober with those you know.”