Day 19: Itecare
I stopped in my tracks when someone yelled out my name. I turned towards the direction I thought the sound had come from. To my left was an outdoor bar, complete with tall palm trees, soft mood lighting, and gentle music playing. There were dozens of people crowded around the numerous wooden tables under the cosy night sky, but I couldn't spot anyone recognisable.
They called out my name again. This time I saw them. A group of three guys and three girls sitting at a small table next to the live band. I had no idea who they were, or how they knew my name, but I walked over to them.
'Do you remember me?'
I looked at the guy. Although he was seated, I could tell he was probably my height. Dark hair, olive complexion, with an accent that I couldn't completely place. Definitely not North American or British sounding, it could have been Middle Eastern possibly.
I glanced at the others at the table. I still had no idea who they were.
'Er,' I began.
'We stayed in the same hostel together! In Rio!' he interrupted excitedly.
Apparently I had even stayed in the same dorm room with them while there. I left to come directly to Salvador, while this group of Israelis spent a few more days in places of interest surrounding Rio, before coming up north.
The truth is, I still couldn't remember them, and only vaguely remembered one or two of the people in the group. And that was probably because I was willing myself to remember.
I had been walking down the high street and back to my hostel when they had spotted me. Earlier that day, I graduated from surf school, and so spent most of the evening downing a few beers with some surf and hostel buddies at a bar just further up the street.
The plan was to call it a quiet night and get up early the next day to do some more surfing. But after this surprise encounter, I decided to sit down and have a couple more drinks with them.
Plus it would be rude not to, after they had made the effort to yell out my name when they saw me.
I soon discovered the Israelis were loud, animated and gulped down booze like water. A few casual drinks turned into rounds, the solid wood table before me started to sway, and the gentle, soothing tunes of the live band contorted into a cacophony of noise pollution.
Realising that I'd downed one drink too many and was way past the point of no return, I stumbled to my feet, staggered back to my hostel, and swayed onto my bed in a drunken daze.
Caipirinhas. So sweet tasting, yet so lethal.