Monday, 28 September 2009

Speckled Jim’s Tug Of War

We’d come to Nasca to see the famous Nasca Lines. Supposedly these were made by an ancient civilisation, possibly with help from little green men in flying saucers. Various shapes and designs are laid out across large distances on a desert valley floor…a monkey, a bird, a (laughable) ET-type figure I reckon must have been done years later, as well as various other formations I’ve already forgotten (watch it on TV, instead).

Everyone in Nasca will try and get you to take a flight to see the lines through them or someone they know, it’s the town’s only industry. It’s a pleasant little town, though. We ended up in a restaurant the first night, and a bandanna-wearing chap talked us into using his services. I bargained him down from $80 to $55 for the flight, so we were quite happy with that. Back to the restaurant, the owner began drinking with us…and before we knew it we were heading off to a club with him and a few friends. The bandanna-wearer told the group he couldn’t stay out too late, as his girlfriend would get mad, and she knew Kung Fu. I told the group that he needn’t worry, as he was the Karate Kid. Cue raucous laughter from all, minus the Kid. This would go some way to explaining why we had to walk back from the airfield to town, after our driver buggered off when we were mid-air. Revenge is a dish best served cold, after all?

So, the Nasca Lines are not so impressive. But the flight was great, as I’d never been in such a small aircraft. We taxied down the runway with me in the co-pilot’s seat, almost having to sit on my hands rather than give in to the temptation to press buttons and pull levers (I fought this impulse even more once in the air, as I always hear the “What would happen if I pushed this?” in my head). The pilot was disconcertingly referring to some manual in his lap even as we picked up speed on the runway; he’d later worry me more while flying no-handed, reading another manual and picking his nose. Impressive multi-tasking, or possession of a death wish? You tell me. It certainly put me off shaking his hand later on…keep your mucus to yourself, pal.

But back to the club. There were two girls with the lads, and Karate Kid generously suggested Speckled buy the first round of (vile) cocktails for everyone. On his round it was back to beers. Very generous, indeed. A while later, KK was trying to get me to buy a drink for his cousin. It would have seemed churlish not to, so I did. I found her quite hard work as her Spanish was spoken with a lisp, and she spoke no English…communicating was difficult over the blaring music. Speckled was champing at the bit, and I brought him into the conversation before ducking out. Result. The next thing I knew, she’s got Jim buying her drink after drink, and was astride one of his thighs, rubbing herself up and down it, while chewing his face off. He seemed happy enough, myself and Garfield left him to it with a wink.

I wish I’d witnessed the rest of the evening (well…early morning). The girl got so drunk she kept collapsing in the club, and then told Speckled she wanted to go home with him. The bar owner we’d been out with decided he liked her, too…despite having a girlfriend. KK told him she wanted Jim, and to go, waving down a taxi for him. A tug-of-war ensued, both the bar owner and Jim laying claim to the semi-conscious sex-object. Yorkshire Brawn won out, and the taxi pulled away…the car barely away from the kerb before she was shoving Jim’s hand down the front of her jeans. Understandably, he thought he was onto a winner. Spilling out at our hotel, a drunken Speckled realised he couldn’t quite drag her into a room myself and Garfield were snoring away in. The girl was sick in the street and collapsed again, and Karate Kid decided he’d better take her home. A comedy of many errors which resulted in Jim getting a mere hour’s sleep and no action; he agreed that less cocktails and an earlier club exit would have resulted in less wallet damage and a guaranteed shag. The main thing in life is to learn from your mistakes. And learn he did.

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