The children and I have been working hard at school. So when a friend invited us to spend the day at a local beach club I decided it was time for a field trip. I love having the flexibility to cancel school so that we can hang out at the pool all day. Like I've said before, I'm not complaining about my job, not one bit.
After living in Azerbaijan a year and a half, I've learned that one of the things Azeris love to do is hang out. And when I say hang out, I mean sit around for a long time and eat food while talking and drinking tea. I've never been somewhere with more tea houses than here. If there's a park, there's at least a tea house and usually a restaurant somewhere in it. On a summer evening you can stroll the bulvar with half the city and pass at least twenty tea houses and restaurants, all with people hanging out at them. When we hiked up to Gala castle, we parked by a restaurant in the woods that was nowhere near the next village.
This is completely different from the American restaurant culture - drive to the restaurant, sit down and eat, and leave. I waitressed (very badly) one summer during college and remember detesting anybody who had the gall to hang out and take up valuable table space that could be filled by the next customer.
So when my friend said beach club, I had some idea of what we were going to. I knew there would be a pool, a beach, and most importantly, a restaurant. The beach we've gone to several times has a beach, a restaurant, and tables to drink tea at, so I guessed this would have something similar.
But when we drove up and there was a paved parking lot with lines, I knew we were in for a real treat. I've only ever seen a parking lot at the embassy, and this one was in better repair than the embassy's. Parked in the parking lot, at a slant so nobody would think about denting them, were a BMW, a Bentley, and a Maserati. 'Good,' I thought, 'they'll probably have normal toilets.'
And the club didn't disappoint. The children and I got to spend the day hanging out in the three pools, going down water slides, warming up on the playground, and eating pizza delivered to a grassy area complete with hammocks, couches, and basket hanging chairs. Like I've said, Azeris really know how to lounge.
The children had a great time, and we finally had to go home so that Brandon didn't have the indignity of having to work all day why we played compounded by coming home to an empty house with no dinner.
I'm sad to have only discovered this place with a month left before R&R. I've already made plans to go back.