Tales from the Road - Lycia,Day 9 (Tuesday)
It's the jackhammer in my head and a texture vaguely remniscent of a cotton wool ball in the mouth that wakes me up on Tuesday. Having gotten my evening off to such a promising start, how did I come to have this whopper of a hangover today?
It all started innocently enough. Dinner for one at a lovely restaurant of gardens and fountains, chit-chat with the charming, handsome waiter, then a stop off at the Deep Blue bar, which has been serving a bit like the Greek chorus to my Tragedy in Fethiye. Most nights have been punctuated by a visit here, some long, others perfunctory, but I have developed a camaraderie with the characters who work there, their quirky personalities, their nuggets of wisdom. The Deep Blue wasn't the problem. My friend Yasemin and I met there and caught up over a beer, and then she, having to work the following morning, took off. I stayed for another and chatted with Berat and Behiye and Cem, but finally the particularly atrocious flavor of hard rock they were playing finally drove me out of my seat and into the street.
Might as well go back to the hotel, I figure, despite still feeling cheerful and energized. What else am I going to do on my own? On the way to the hotel, I pass a restaurant where I'd stopped for coffee earlier in the day. I'd been talking with the manager, Tarik, about paragliding (I decided I'd finally worked up the nerve to do it) and I was picking his brain about the best companies to go with, and how to get a good price. Like every other person in Turkey whom you ask for information about something, he says he's got a friend in the business, he can hook me up for a good price, he'll just need to talk to his friend and get back to me.
So I'm strolling past the restaurant and see him there, decide to stop in to find out what was up with paragliding. Sit down, have a drink; what'll it be? Whatever you're having, I say, and a moment later a vodka Red Bull makes an appearance. No developments on the paragliding front, I soon find out. Whatever...
The speed with which the man can down a mixed drink leaves me dumbfounded. And then I make my first mistake -- I try to keep up, swigging a great gulp even though it's mostly vodka, I soon discover. Out on the blackness of the bay, there is an enormous, piratey-looking hulk of ship lit up in blue neon light, and there seems to be music playing. Curious, I ask Tarik what it is, for I haven't seen it before. Turns out it's a new disco -- on the water.
"Want to go see it?"
And before I know it, we're piled into the motor boat and zooming through the cool night air out to the boat in the bay. It's an interesting concept: climbing up a steep ladder onto an old wooden ship in order to go dancing. I like it. The wait staff are all dressed as pirates, complete with eye patches, swords and sashes. The treatment he gets makes it obvious that my host is a VIP of sorts, which is quite all right with me. I can't honestly remember the last time a man took me out and bought me drinks, or dinner, or both...bring it on.
The drinking sprints continue, and I'm holding my own like a champ. I even get out on the dance floor with a gregarious group of Dutch people who are urging us on. Tarik wisely stays seated, while I practice spins that nearly send me flying off into the inkly blackness. (Tip: a downward sloping deck, combined with too many cocktails, is not the best place to attempt to rediscover one's dancing prowess.) Drunk or no drunk, I have a hilarious time, dancing like I haven't in years, liberated by the fact that no one here knows me.
I don't remember leaving, don't remember the cool wind on my face on the boat ride back. Have no idea how I got to the hotel room. How I undressed myself is no mystery -- I didn't! But at least I managed to get the shoes off.
So this morning is the usual litany of curses and self-beratement about the stupidity of drinking to excess, the why don't I ever learn self-flagellation, the oh my god I think I'd rather be hit by a bus than suffer this agony....
The day is pretty much a bust, dedicated as it is to surviving the hangover.
It's a quiet afternoon and evening in Fethiye, mostly spent wishing I weren't such a colossal idiot.