At this point, I’m almost a month into my adventures abroad in Edinburgh, Scotland. The city of my dreams has become home, if only temporarily.
There’s been a steep learning curve on the workings of public transportation, grocery shopping and the pub scene, among many other things.
In an effort to brush up on that last one, my five American flat-mates and I headed out to a pub crawl organized by the Napier Student Union during our first week here.
We were at our fifth stop of the evening, The Chanter, when something occurred that will surely be one of my most discussed/remembered/joked-about encounters of the semester, if not my life.
Slightly more modern and classy than most of the other places we had been, we checked out the menu and drink specials.
Third from the top was the “Tennessee Twist.”
When my eyes set in on that puppy, I knew I had to try it and represent my home state, no questions asked.
I battled the crowd to get up to the bar and, seeing the bartender was going to be awhile, took the chance to pull out my coins and figure out which little pieces of silver and gold were the ones I needed.
As I looked up, most likely with a very self-satisfied expression on my face, I scanned the other people propped against the bar—oh so casually, of course.
My attention was quickly caught by a guy just down from me. Tall? Check. Nicely dressed? Check. Cute, but not TOO cute? Check.
I ordered my taste of home and proudly handed over exact change, all the while keeping an eye on my man down the bar. Having been in bonny Scotland for almost a week and having met practically no Scottish people, I allowed my liquid courage to propel me down the bar toward my mystery man.
What followed in the next five minutes has been engraved, bookmarked and tabbed in the annals of my own personal history.
It was just simple, inane small talk with Mr. Sean from-Glasgow-and-in-town-(wearing-a-sweater)-for-an-interview. That’s about the only solid information I know about him, but, in that moment, he was perfect.
He was Scottish and wearing a freakin’ sweater, which apparently left a big impression on me because he will go down in history as “Sean in the Sweater.”
Our epic conversation drew to an end as it became clear that he had been sent to the bar to get drinks for all his friends and he actually needed to deliver them, but we parted with a slightly hopeful and quite vague “I hope I see you later” on his part.
No line from a Shakespearean romance, but, under the circumstances, good enough for me.
Alas, love at the pub was not to be; within a few minutes, our pub-crawling forced me to move on and abandon all hopes of another meeting. Sigh.
And, so, the Sean-in-the-sweater legend was born