On my last night in Odessa, we attended a local bar’s farewell shindig. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I had heard good review from another set of hostel guests I had befriended earlier in the month. I was curious as to why the bar was closing down so suddenly especially since it was supposedly the hip place to be. It seemed like a fitting good-bye to attend, since it was also my last night in Ukraine.
As soon as I walked in, I was shocked because I felt as if I had stumbled upon a wormhole. This bar was a combination of my high school Ska music years and possibly San Francisco in the 1960s. The dancing was confusing and disturbing – upon first entering the bar I had the illusion that I was witnessing Berkeley during the Free Speech Movement. There was a circle of patrons holding hands and running into and out of the circle while some strange whimsical nonsense played in the background. I decided I had to keep my eyes on the dance floor, just in case anything else ridiculous happened.
|Random Hippie Circle|
While James, Leonardo and Dasha waited in a sickeningly long line for what was later deemed inferior beer, I made my rounds and talked to people who I had met over the past month. There was one set of crazy eyes I definitely did not expect to ever make eye contact with ever again – fork girl was there. She said, “Hi!!!” to me in her deafening high pitched scream and all I could think of was to pretend like I had no idea who she was. The rest of the night, I utilized my survival training skills and avoided eye contact.
|Penis Shirt states, "Happy Ending"|
Some people at the bar bought farewell shirts that boasted a large penis on it, and I just laughed, wondering if the evening could get any weirder. Then, I went back to the dance floor and saw this happening.
Sheer ridiculousness! The band was definitely trying too hard, because I am pretty sure they were not that drunk.
|My Ukrainian Family|
We later decided to get sushi then head to another karayoke bar. I was excited to finally get to sing a song in Russian! James and I sung a song from Irony of Fates or Enjoy your Bath, the most famous New Year's movie in Russian.
After a few hours, I was exhausted, but urged by my fellow comrades that they only way to survive my last night in Ukraine was to drink and stay up all night until my flight the next day. No thanks to the drinking, and maybe to the staying up all night.
I really did not want to stay up all night, and at some point around 6:30AM I once again had to resort to threats of walking home alone. Sorry, guys. I didn't mean to break the Ukrainian tradition of drinking all night and wandering drunk into the airport. Last thing I want is to accidentally end up back in Moscow.