In 2010, I spent the month of May in Europe and Northern Africa with 20 college friends on a trip called Juniors Abroad. Draaaaammaaaa. Just kidding it was actually harmonious and amazing.
One of the stops along the way was Sorrento, Italy, a town overlooking the Tyrrhenian Sea (you know, the Tyrrhenian Sea). When in Sorrento, be sure to catch a game of Texas Hold Them.
One evening a group of us were strolling down one of the main roads when we ran into a guy around the same age as us who wanted to talk to us. This guy had a name but I can’t remember it, so we will call him Carlo. Carlo didn’t really speak English, but we somehow learned that he recently moved to Sorrento from Brazil. Now I had recently studied in Mexico, and my Spanish was much better than the nothing it is now, so Carlo and I tried to communicate in the vaguely similar languages that are Spanish and Portuguese.
It didn’t work.
Miraculously, we figured out that Carlo was trying to invite us to a club, and somehow we thought it would be a good idea to follow this stranger that we couldn’t understand as he lead us from the main downtown area to poorly lit streets with no promised club in sight.
Several times we almost turned back around, but for some reason or another we kept following him. I gave us a 60/40 chance of surviving.
After 10-15 minutes, Carlo delivered us to our promised club, and upon entering, we were both pleased that it was an actual club, and confused by the lack of party-goers and staff. Looking around the space, it appeared to be closed, with the exception of about 15 people dancing on a dance floor off to the side. We scoped the place out and decided it seemed too closed for us to be anywhere but where the other people were.
Whatever, time to party.
We made our way to the dance floor area and nestled into the 2 or 3 tables that were unoccupied. And we danced.
The club was playing a great mix of house music, so obviously I HAD to get up and dance on one of the tables. I mean, I had just been in Mexico and that was what people did there! The other people looked at me with slightly confused expressions, but the music was loud enough that I didn’t care.
The longer we were at this club, the more we realized that nobody else was coming in, and it was just our group and that other group of people that were here originally. And they all seemed to know each other. And when one of our guys tried to dance with some of their girls, they were having none of it. Their group was not interested in having anything to do with us. Whatever.
More good European house music, more dancing.
Then something weird happened. All of a sudden we noticed the music turn down, and their group started gathering up and singing. And then a bunch of middle-aged people walked out singing and one of the boys in their group walked out into the middle of their circle.
And then it dawned on us. We were at this kid’s birthday party.
We all looked at each other as the pieces came together. The club was empty because it was rented out. Nobody else was coming in because this was a private event. The bar was closed because these were teenagers!
Then it sunk in: I had just table-danced at a random 16-year old’s birthday. In front of his parents.
Nonchalantly, we grabbed our things and bolted out the door.
To this day it is a mystery why Carlo brought us there… Was he just pretending to be a club promoter so that eventually he will have enough experience to actually be a club promoter? Was Carlo a confused person? Was Carlo a figment of our group’s imagination? Was Carlo wronged by the 16-year-old birthday boy and this was his version of revenge? We might never know.
Anyway, moral of the story is if things seem fishy, don’t get on a table and dance.