Friday, May 29, 2015

Journal Entry for February 23, 2004: A French reception

It don't take much to satisfy one's deepest longings in Khartoum. One is alcohol and the other is, how shall we say, company. Well, turns out that the French can be depended upon for one (and, for the record, who really needs the other). Went to the French Ambassador's residence this evening and scored big time. Only the second place in all of Sudan that has gin PLUS white vermouth at the same location at the same time. And to boot, olives! Taught the southern Sudanese bartenders how to mix a dry martini -- okay, it took two tries but both were worth it -- and then went over to the table with olives -- black will do -- and plunked two in. Had a GREAT time. At the end of the evening, told the ambassador that he could invite me any time he had the mixings of a martini. He said, like James Bond? I said, yes, just like James Bond.

On the way home, spoke to the Nile expedition dude. He said he'd be happy to have me accompany them when they leave Khartoum later this week. Two days on the Nile till we reach Merowe. We'll get to pass over the Sixth Cataract too. Thanks to the martinis, and therefore the French, I agreed.

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