Peter, Luke and Mark* (* actual names) met each other in a buzzling upmarket beach bar in the middle of the desert. An oasis of televisions, live music and beer. Paul, Matthew and John and the other six apostles were nowhere to be found. Probably fishing.
We were young
The three met in the Bruce Willis section of the bar. Where pecs, biceps, twelve hour stubble and weird hair were trying to impress high heels and plunging necklines. The obvious problem being that the ratio was totally skew. With 7 testosterone fuelled young men for every one girl. The poor ladies all seemed like a deer caught in headlights. Well not all of them. Other were enjoying the free drinks, but had this weird it’s-you-and-your-hand-tonight sparkle in their eye.
Peter, Luke and Mark were observing this mad scramble for attention from a distance, for two reasons: (1) Marriage and (2) Maturity.
Eventually observing the ridiculousness became boring and the woman screeching through a melody to the monotonous beat of a loud drum a bit overwhelming. It was rowdy and very loud. Conversation was basically impossible.
They moved one level up to the James Bond section of the bar and sighed with relief. The vibe was chilled with tables and couches scattered throughout. Mature people were drinking whisky and settling comfortably listening to the live band. Mellowness took over. There was a few girls dancing on a small dance-floor surrounded by more desperate men. They submitted more proof to the well-known fact that (1) White men can’t dance and (2) Desperation is never a good move.
Peter, Luke and Mark continued their discussion on the ignorance of youth and how it’s wasted on the young. The guys on the dance floor were totally oblivious to the fact that their dance moves resembled a man taking a piss against an electric fence. Way too much gyration of the lower half of the body. And flinging your arms around like a windmill in heat should never be considered cool. One must never consume that much alcohol. Ever.
What Peter, Mark and Luke didn’t realise whilst sharing their endless wisdom, was the copious amounts of beer waiters were carrying to their table. And the well known fact that beer causes people to grow younger.
Luke showed the first signs. He stood up unannounced, hands in pocket, and had this very unnatural swing in his hips. Mark and Peter should have realised immediately what was happening, but it was too much fun watching other people making asses of themselves. Maybe they didn’t really want to. But the evidence was clear. The three friends were growing younger. Yes, it didn’t lighten the dark spots on their hands or filled the crevices around their eyes but it was happening…
Mark was next to go. He sat back in his chair and lifted his arms high, moving them like anemones on the sea bed. In his mind he was matching the beat of the music. It seemed more like a deaf-mute musical number. Peter was laughing hysterically, until the band started playing that awesome eighties hit… And he was lost too.
The next moment all three prophets were standing, growling like a pack of hungry wolves, focused on the dance floor, and the promise of release.
All restrictions held together by their grey hair and perceived wisdom; fell off like melting snow in the spring sun. Landing on the ground with a loud POOF. It didn’t matter whether they could dance or not. It only matter that they had too. They were turning younger by the minute.
Yes they were…
To cut a very long story short, Peter, Mark and Luke ended up as 23 year olds in the Bruce Willis section of the bar. Standing on a beach, jarring their fists at the DJ who was pumping beats into the Middle Eastern sky. They were celebrating. The night for being dark. The music for having a beat. The air for being invisible. They celebrated being 23. Being alive. Letting loose. And they had more beer.
Finally it ended. It was time to go home and they parted with enthusiastic high five’s and brotherly embraces. Never to meet again.
Peter woke up two hours later to catch a flight back to his actual home, but stayed in bed for a moment after the wake-up call came. Running through the nostalgia of the night before, trying to crack a smile. But Peter could only manage a silent curse as he swung his legs off the bed.
The problem was that the mind of the 23 year old was still stuck in the body of someone slightly older. And the body wasn’t impressed about the abuse he had to endure a few hours before. So it was going to be a very long flight.