A couple of weekends ago I was invited to a “Mexican” beach party in a beach club near Beirut. I think I went more out of curiosity than of patriotism. I mean, after seeing the poster for the party- with a pretty bikini girl with a sombrero on, and an inviting “Arriba, Arriba, Andale, Andale”- how could I say no?
So here I come, with my jean-shorts and my official Mexican soccer team T-shirt ready to experience some relaxing beach time on a Sunday afternoon.
When my husband and I got to the beach club entrance, we realized that there were bodyguards at the door, and a list. And our names had actually being put on the list. “Hmmm…” I thought to myself. “I think we didn’t understand what a Sunday afternoon beach party in Lebanon was all about”.
When we started walking inside of the beach club I realized that I was-yet again -severely underdressed (and overweight). Yes, Lebanese women wear high heels and make up even to beach parties.
As we arrived to where the party was taking place, my husband’s jaw dropped, and quite frankly mine did too. Let’s say that right in front of us was a Girls-Gone –Wild meets Cancun Spring Break meets Playboy Mansion.
Our host greeted us with a vigorous champagne splash in the face from a bottle that he had been shaking over the dancers. And as I looked around me I realized that I didn’t have to go to Cancun anymore to experience the crazy spring break frenzy. Cancun had just come to me! Right here in Lebanon, on a Sunday afternoon!
I must confess I was a bit overwhelmed at the beginning by the techno music, the high-heeled girls dancing on the top of the bar with only their bikinis on (that is besides the shoes) and the drinking directly from the bottle from the guys. Gosh I am getting old.
But you know what? They had REAL Mariachi hats hanging from the ceiling and that gave me the little boost of confidence that I needed. Those hats were the only Mexican thing about the Mexican party besides me (and the chilies hanging from the ceiling). So this hot Chiquita put the Mariachi hat on and then showed those Lebanese girls some Mexican moves.
After a couple of hours people just… left.
And all the crazy party, noise and girls wearing mini bikinis were replaced by a beautiful sunset over the Mediterranean Sea. My husband and I looked at each other baffled and just started laughing. Where else can you see these contrasts, from intense partying to a romantic sunset in a matter of hours? Only in Lebanon.