Anna in the Nick of time

Nick, who has a tongue to rival Gene Simmons, just before getting lost in London. Photo by David Lansing.

One last story about Bebe’s party. Actually, this story takes place after the party had ended about 2 a.m. Sunday morning. It seems that a post-party, attended mostly by friends of Hardy and Bebe’s young adult children, took place at their house after the big soiree. One of the attendees was Nick, an extremely intelligent and thoughtful young man who graduated last year from Berkeley and is preparing to go on to graduate school to study marine biology or something. I give you the basic details of his education to let you know that he is an extremely smart kid, the following story not withstanding.

Obviously there was a fair amount of booze consumed at Bebe’s party. And then just a tiny bit more was consumed at the post-party. So when Nick finally decided he needed to head back to his hotel, shortly after three in the morning, he was a bit wobbly. And disoriented. In fact, he had no idea where his hotel was (despite the fact that it was only about a block away from the post-party). So he wandered around for a bit, in his dishdasha and green and gold prayer cap, lost, until he had the somewhat good sense to call his younger sister Anna, who’d long since gone to bed, and ask her how to get to the hotel.

Under normal circumstances, Anna probably would have thrown on some clothes and gone to rescue her brother, but since it was so late and he was only a block away from the hotel, she simply gave him instructions and went back to sleep. Until the phone rang about an hour later. This time there was a London policeman on the other end of the line.

Evidently Nick had been unable to locate his hotel, as close as it was, and so had decided to head back to Hardy and Bebe’s house to ask for assistance. But instead of ringing their doorbell he’d rung that of a neighbor. Who looked out her window and saw a young man in Arab clothing staggering around on her doorstep at three in the morning. Of course, she did the sensible thing and immediately rang up the police who arrived moments later.

When Anna showed up, moments after getting the call from the police, Nick was still trying to explain to everyone why he was wearing a dishdasha and kufi cap and why he’d rung the doorbell of a complete stranger at four in the morning. Anna took over. And amazingly, the two police officers not only believed her story about the Middle Eastern costume party they’d been to that night but also released Nick into her custody with the understanding that she would immediately escort him back to the nearby hotel. Which she did. With the officers trailing close behind in their vehicle.

So everything was fine. Until Nick, for some unknown reason, decided to lift up his dishdasha while standing in the lobby of the hotel and, just as the patrol car was about to depart, started giving the officers a little belly dancing demonstration.

At which point Anna grabbed her brother, blew a kiss to the stunned police officers, and rushed upstairs, dragging her drunk brother behind her. Where, one can assume, Nick spent the rest of what was left of the night blissfully passed out.

Ah, youth.


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