The Vacationer Part 2

Posted on October 19, 2007


Although copious bleeding is of course a mark of great celebration, we decided nevertheless that one trip to the ER does not a four day vacation make. A couple of nights later we went to Buddha Bar, which just opened in the Sofitel El Gezira. T. Shahin was fortunately present, preventing further thirdwheelery on my part. The happy couple had made the ultimate sacrifice of wearing dress shoes, which I sneakily looked at in disbelief under the table.

I had made the reservations myself, which proved so easy I was instantly suspicious. Normally, the making of reservations at bars and clubs in Egypt is fraught with obstacles: the person you speak to normally acts as if you have requested 2-3 litres of his blood. Conflicting information will be given, deposits will be requested in varying amounts, impertinent inquiries will be made as to the number of females, mo7agabat, and foreign passports in your party, etc. This is if they concede at all that reservations are even possible. Ultimately, you hang up not being quite sure that you will in fact find a place to park your behind. I was also suspicious as there had not been a big opening party for the place. The woman I spoke to did indeed insist upon “couples” and a smart casual dress code, but their way of weeding out the indigent is to instill a minimum requirement not in Egyptian pounds, but in drinks. You have to order three drinks. I neglected to cross-examine her on whether these could be non-alcoholic, since this was moot for our group, but it could bite them in the ass if that were the case.

Obviously, the drinks were expensivo. Expensivo neik. Beer was L.E. 35! And mixed drinks for L.E. 85! And so was the food…10 pieces of sushi went for L.E. 140 or some shit. I don’t even like sushi! So we focused on drinking, eating instead what T and I had first thought were artfully arranged hot towels in a bowl, so artificial and wavy were they, but which turned out to be prawn crackers. We toasted yuppiedom. Then we directed our attention the tables on either side of us, at each of which rich, ugly old men were entertaining what were clearly ladies of the night. Either way, we considered it would be only fair if they put out, since we calculated that thousands of pounds were being spent on the attempt. Massive platters of 60 sushi pieces and whole bottles of rum were being brought out. In fact, we all agreed that people should only go there if sex was definitely in the offing. There was absolutely no room for uncertainty, because if you had bought a human slave and made it into sushi, it would most assuredly have cost less. I was telling an Amn Dawla officer friend of mine about the place later, and he assured me that I had indeed accurately evaluated the cost of human flesh.

Anyway, we had a good time. The yummy yummy martinis were worth every piaster, and the atmosphere was beautiful. Even Cairo looked more gorgeous through the windows of the place than it normally does. The service was stupendously good, and you know how rare that is. So go. At the beginning of the month. And if you’re on a date, negotiations on the outcome of the date will have to be very specific.

Posted in: friends, intoxicants