Saturday, October 23, 2010

A Ghost, a Clown and a Pole

I pulled up to La Descarga, the Cuban speakeasy on Western, when my friend Jill called. She was nearby and I heard myself saying, "Why don't you just stop by?" I knew I would not let her, but part of me wished she could tag along. Just as I was about to bid her farewell and follow my rule of being alone at the bar, I locked eyes with a man standing near the entrance smoking a cigarette. "Actually Jill, please come immediately," I said as I let the phone fall from my ear in disbelief.

Dak and I had a brief romance six years ago. I laughed to myself as he waved me over, am I going to see every boy I have been involved with on this blog? Is that what this whole thing is going to be about? I remember feeling very fondly for him at the time, but no harm was done on either side. Dak gave me a welcoming hug and introduced me to his girlfriend. They both are deaf and we tried to catch up as best we could. I felt a bit helpless, forgetting what little sign language I once knew and not sure who I should face when I spoke.

Jill walked onto the scene and I was sure she was utterly confused by our phone call. She had no idea that this was the Dak, but quickly figured it out as she was introduced. "We'll see you inside," I said to him, with a rush in my step as we approached the bouncer. Asking Jill to come was a knee-jerk reaction as I remembered running into my ex on this blog. I felt guilty and knew I could not count the night as a Girl at a Bar evening, but really did not want to be alone in the same room as another ghost of romance past.

La Descarga has a strict dress code and a list, but with all of the hoopla, the bouncers were very sweet. They were excited to create the illusion of a speakeasy for us first-timers and we were escorted up a staircase into a reception area. Shown through a closet, pushing our way past shirts on hangers, we entered an awesome dark space. On the hour, a band plays Cuban tunes while a scantily clad spunky women dances around the spiral iron staircase and on top of the bar, eating fire. A most special experience in this city.

Jill and I walked out after 45 minutes, saying goodbye to Dak and his lady as we left. They looked very much in love. I was genuinely happy for him. There was nothing scary about that interaction beyond the initial shock; I should not have let it ruin my mission of being alone for the night. Jill reminded me that you can choose what you let affect you and I knew I made the wrong choice here. As we stepped onto the street, a large group of boys were having trouble getting in because of their attire. I made a joke to one about his hipster flannel and as he started swaying with me on the street, he replied, "You aren't leaving are you? We need to dance more." I turned to Jill and said, "I have to go back inside." Adventure, I have not forsaken you.

Once again in the bar, I danced and laughed with ten boys out for a birthday. As tradition dictated, they were on their way to the pole dancing/burlesque joint Jumbo's Clown Room next. Feeling I did not want to wrongly crash another boys night on this blog, I declined their offer to go. But after some humorous convincing on their part, I chose to tag along. Maybe it was the fact that I had found a great experience or that I really was interested to see what Jumbo's was all about, but I was secretly overjoyed to join them. I saw some pretty darn flexible girls, threw a few singles onto the dance floor, was twirled around in the parking lot, passed on my cellular telephone number and drove home laughing. Rock solid fun. On this part of the night, I had most definitely made the right choice.

Addendum: Finding myself back at La Descarga on a blog evening less than one month later, I am convinced that only the craziest of nights happen there.

1 comment:

Jill said...

How come Dak gets a fake name and I do not? I would like to be called Poppy in all future blogs.

Also, I am so happy that you finally went to Jumbo's! Seriously.