OK, I’m certainly a believer in the charm that a rustic condition can offer. But now It’s been two days without electricity in my hostel, yet it’s just hot enough to dread the sweaty hassle of moving to a new place – and so here I am. In fact I’m now down the street using a neighbors wifi and drinking ‘agua con gas’ to try to cure this vicious hangover. A simple glass of wine with last night’s dinner began the swift erosion of my one month sobriety and I ended up at the cheesiest disco / breakdance variety show with a Mexican traveler called Ivan surrounded by more transvestites that I have been for a while. Since 2007 in Phuket in fact. I always enjoy these bizarre creatures; their flamboyant revelry adds a certain spice to any party and they seemed especially enamored by this early 90s techno.
I went to hostel that Aaron the EMT had suggested and the first people I met were three girls named Katrin, Karin and Katia. I’m still not sure who’s who but the transience of backpacking means it doesn’t really matter that much anyway. Anyway, I believe it was Katia, on of my two female roommates that covered my nakedness this morning. I have no idea how it happened but somewhere between going to bed and waking up I had removed both my sheet and my boxers – presumably as a result of the oppressive heat due to the fan was not working. Damn the heat. Damn my shame. Damn this lack of electricity! However I am a firm believer that you’re Only as Creepy as you Feel™ so I struck up a a simple morning conversation while I pulled on the boxers that I found crumpled at the end of my bed. Actually it was entirely possible that THEY had pulled them off – at least this is what I told myself.
I actually hadn’t reserved the next night so when I ventured downstairs for a coffee, Vera the delightfully perky receptionist informed me that I was moving rooms. “But lucky you, you now have a balcony, windows and are sharing with 5 girls. You better behave!” Had she been informed of this mornings naked shenanigans? Either way I said it was ‘no hay problema’ and that I would certainly behave. I moved my bags in to room 302 and the first two room mates I met were two Swedish sisters. It turned out that there were on the end of their 6 month journey and so most of the time just lay in bed together and watched Friends episodes on an iPod, occasionally taking breaks to wrestle and giggle. I’m not joking. Later that day I met the other two, a truly striking Norwegian blonde and a well endowed German brunette who was either giving me the stink eye or flirting with me. Finally just before I turned in the final roommate arrived. A Japanese/Brazilian who was on vacation by herself and had come to learn to Tango. Buddha give me strength.
Luckily (or not), when I woke up the next morning I still had my underwear on and surveyed the scene before my eyes. A few of the girls had kicked off the sheets in the heat of the night and it was a wondrous spectrum of frilly panties and bras. I laughed to myself at yet another gift of the cosmos as I went to cool off in a cold shower. Before leaving LA, and after my mediation retreat I had promised myself to be good and stay on the noble path, free of decadent sensation chasing. In the light of this new development, that promise seemed like a distant artifact from another time – perhaps even a dream that I could shrug off with a simple haiku:
Oh Buenos Aires,
You sing a sweet sirens song!
Can mere man resist?