by Nathan Jones
It was my first trip to Gran Canaria. Just 15 hours earlier I had been in a small town in the East Midlands of England, looking out of the window at yet another flat grey sky. The winter had been long and cold and I was feeling desperate for some sun. At that time I worked in the call-centre of a very well known credit card company. The manager was a complete ass-hole, always banging on about ‘targets’ and ‘on call behaviours’. He would tell us how we should smile when we talked to the customers even though they couldn’t see us, because it showed in our voices. Of course that’s true. We all know it. But what he didn’t seem to realize, or care about, is that to smile, most people need something to smile about, and we had very little to smile about. The pay was poor, the hours long and the products we were supposed to sell where nothing less than legalised fraud.
We had gone into work that day to find out that the company had decided to move most of it’s call centre operations to India. As we were all agency staff, we were no longer needed. I think it’s what they call have a ‘flexible workforce’.
So, there we were, my friends and I, temporarily out of work on a grey Wednesday at the end of a long winter. I’ve never been the sort of person to let things get on top of me, so I sat in the coffee shop that morning, with my friends, Mark and Grant, trying to think of how I could turn a terrible day into the best day of my life, and I came up with an idea.
“Why don’t we go on holiday!”
My friends looked at me as if I was crazy. In fact they said as much.
“No, no, seriously! We could do it!” I said, getting excited. “Why don’t we go to the travel agent right now and see if there are any last minute bargains. We set a budget and see what comes up. What have we got to lose!”
“But we can’t book a holiday!” complained Mark, “We don’t know when we might start in a new job! What if we book it for next week and we get an interview. It would be a disaster!”
“Nooo! You don’t get it!” I said, as I stood up, full of the energy that a brilliant idea gives you. “We go TODAY! Listen, these are the conditions we set. It has to be today, it has to be hot and it has to be less than £200. If we can’t find something that fits all three conditions we don’t book! It’s brilliant!”
“Now I know he’s gone mad!” laughed Grant. “What planet do you live on! There’s no way!”
“So, we get to dream a little and… you can chat up the girls that you’re always staring at through the window.” I replied, desperately trying to find a lever to persuade him. In Grant’s case the possibility of sex usually did the trick.
They looked at each other hesitating.
“Come on!” I insisted, dragging them both to their feet.” We don’t have a second to lose!”
Five minutes later we walked into the travel agency. The pretty girls were sat at their desks as usual, but I was more interested in the ‘pretty’ boy that was sat near the door. As luck would have it he was also the only one free so I made a beeline for him.
“Hi! How’s it going!” I said, as we sat down facing him. He looked up a little unsure, with one of those plastic smiles that customer service people often put on at the same time as their name badge.
He didn’t look any older than about 21 but I could see the thick layer of cheap orange foundation beginning to crack near the corners of his eyes. It was a shame really because he really was very good looking and the fake tan, foundation and eyeliner took away his fresh youthful look.
I laid out our conditions enthusiastically and he sat back taking a deep breath.
“Well! That’s a challenge!” he said. “But I like challenges.” he continued, catching my enthusiasm.
He pulled himself closer to his computer and began tapping away at the keys, never looking away from the screen as offer after offer appeared and was eliminated.
“That ones too expensive, that ones too cold, another too cold, That ones tomorrow.”
Suddenly he stopped and asked “What about this one? Gran Canaria, flying from heathrow tonight at 7pm, £129, flight, hotel and transfers included. Self catering, swimming pool with bar, current temperatures 28 degrees centigrade!”
I looked at the others as my mouth dropped open in surprise and amazement! They looked back at me eyes wide. That gave us 6 hours to get home, pack and get down to the airport before check-in closed. We could just about do it. We paid by credit card, courtesy of our old employers, and hurried out of the shop pushing each other out of the way, giddy with excitement.
I dashed off home, nearly running under a car on the way, and threw some clothes into a bag. We jumped on the half hourly train to London and then the airport coach, arriving with minutes to spare before check-in closed. Before we knew it we were on the plane and on our way.
The flight was completely full but there were less families than I expected. Lots of single guys and young couples. As we had got the last three seats on the aircraft we were sat far apart and I ended up next to a young couple. I closed my eyes, trying to shut out some of the noise with my mp3 player as I tried to gather my shattered nerves. ‘Wow! We really did it!’ I thought.
When we arrived it was dark but as we got off the plane we could feel the warmth in the air and the dusty smell of a place that has been without rain for months. The coach dropped us off at our hotel and we rushed to our room racing each other to be first through the door and get the first choice of bed.
Our apartment had two beds in one room and a sofa bed in the lounge. I was second through the door and got one of the beds in the bedroom along with Grant. Mark had to make do with the sofa bed.
One of the good things about the Canaries is that most of the good bars don’t even open until after midnight, so we weren’t too late to go out. We showered quickly and put on our creased but clean summer shirts and shorts. We went out onto the street not even knowing exactly where we where or where the bars where.
I spotted a couple of guys who looked like they knew what they were doing and we began to follow them. I remember that one of them had an amazing ass that filled his shorts to perfection. I tried to sneak a look as often as possible without the others noticing.
Eventually we arrived at a place called the Yumbo Centre. It looked pretty ugly and we found out later that it was a shopping centre by day.
We followed the guys, beginning to wonder if we had made the right choice, when suddenly we turned a corner and were met with the ‘thump thump thump’ of nightclub music. This was more like it!
It seemed a little odd that there were no women. We were all a bit innocent in those days and it took us a while to realise that we were in a gay club. In fact it turned out that the Yumbo Centre was full of gay bars and nightclubs! When we realised, Mark was all for doing a runner but surprisingly Grant was on my side and we persuaded him that it would be a laugh, and anyway, it was a bit late to be looking for anything else, even if we knew where to look. Eventually he gave in and we decided to just get drunk and enjoy the night.
We got our drinks and stood to one side. There were no tables and the whole club seemed to have been given over to dancing. After such a stressful day we were all a bit tired and when I spotted some guys coming out of a room on the other side I signalled to the others that I was going to check it out, hoping to find a seat.
As we got closer I realised why it had taken us so long to see it. There was a curtain over the doorway and it was only when somebody entered or left that the entrance was visible. I began to lose my nerve a little and hesitated when we arrived at the curtain. Something told me that this was not just another part of the bar. As I hesitated two guys pushed passed me and as they pulled back the curtain I saw into the room. It was dimly lit and small but I could definitely see tables and chairs. That was enough for me!
We entered the room and found ourselves a space at a table against the wall. The room was long and narrow with a passage that ran down the middle. Mark sat down first and as I took my seat at his side he was sheepishly looking over the top of his beer taking a big gulp.
Suddenly he spat it out choking and coughing, eyes bulging as he pointed behind me. Grant and I both looked round to see a TV showing a close-up shot of a guy pumping his shaft into another guys ass. At first we didn’t even realise what we were seeing, but when our brains finally managed to process the image and we realised that both participants had balls and cock we burst out laughing, patting Mark on the back as he tried to catch his breath.
“Fuck!” he shouted.
“Exactly!” I replied “Well spotted!” and we all started laughing.
Grant and I sat down. He seemed to be enjoying the atmosphere as much as I was. I couldn’t believe my luck. ‘This was definitely what I had wished for’ I thought, as I looked at my watch, noticing it was just after midnight. The best day of my life… so far!
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