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Detroit - Baseball game & a night out in Detroit!

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Entry 17 Sat 14th May

It was a supremely welcomed change to sleep in a comfy bed with a whole room to myself. I could empty my backpack out and hang things up. Only two weeks in and living out of a backpack was already something I wish I could do away with. I was able to wash and dry my clothes for free and enjoy the feeling of carpet on my feet. My cousin’s house was really nice and homey; I felt comfortable straight away and I already knew I’d miss that when I left.

My cousin Sarah moved over to America several years ago and is now living & working around the area of Detroit as a forensic scientist for the police force. Impressive I know. What a place to work as a forensic scientist; the home of crime – Detroit. I was eager to find out details and she told me some great stories involving herself and her colleagues. One to note would be that one of her colleagues had arrested Eminem a few times back when he was a trouble maker. Apparently he was always getting beaten up and the police had to go save him many times. I planned to stay for the weekend or a long weekend so we would have plenty of time to go visit Eminem’s old trailer park and the 8 Mile road. A few ‘attractions’ that I don’t think most backpackers get to visit!

I was informed of today’s plans which sounded great: go watch a baseball game and then a night out. We first went to a bar in Detroit for drinks and snacks where I met a bunch of her friends and friends of friends. Unknown to me at first was that this was a girl’s birthday bash type thing; the whole day’s plans – so lots of people came. The drinking had started early at 2pm. We stayed at the bar for a couple of hours and then headed off to the local baseball ground. The Detroit Tigers were the team I was to support; I had even donned one of Sarah’s Tigers jerseys. The stadium was cool from the outside; huge tigers in leaping poses were atop of the stadium as well as an enormous tiger right at the centre which was surrounded by photograph taking supporters.

Baseball is a sport that has never interested me, nor anyone I’ve ever known closely. My exposure to the sport consists of about a total of 20 minutes viewing time in my life. That only happened from flicking through the TV channels late at night and ending up on Channel 5 for a short time; normally either waiting for something else to start or probably being too drunk or lazy to turn over for a few minutes. The bits I had seen were boring at best and nothing much happened for long amounts of time. Incidentally I also have the same opinion of football, just to a slightly lesser extent.

I was told that going to watch a live game consisted mostly of getting drunk but I would have been happy to go anyway. Watching any sport live at the stadium is always better than on TV and I’d probably never go otherwise so why not. We entered the stadium and the atmosphere hit us instantly; it was great. A collective buzz of excitement was everywhere. A baseball game lasts quite a few hours so people go to the games as a full day out, and more accurately, a full day out drinking with your mates. I could see the attraction. People don’t wait for breaks to go get food, drinks or go for a walk - they go all the time. It’s very laid back and ironically almost just like you are at home and can freely get up and walk around at any time etc.

With it being Tara’s 30th (I think?) We had special access to the ‘Tiger Lounge’ - a kind of VIP bar and seating area. We all went up the elevators and carried on the drinking at the bar. The game was shown on TVs if you couldn’t be bothered to extend your gaze out of the windows. For quite a while I forgot we were even at a baseball game; we all chatted and drank beer and generally had a good time. Later on Sarah informed me that the game was nearing its final half an hour of play and we should go outside to our seats to watch it properly and so we did and we watched the Tigers win the game. The end was actually pretty exciting and I had a good time in the middle of thousands of drunk and excited Americans.

Game over we headed back to the lounge to find everyone else. On the way we asked a guy to take our photo with the scoreboard in the background. This man took possibly the worst photo in the history of the world. He must have been wasted. He had zoomed in so far that our faces filled the screen, and then only taken it from our noses upwards! My British politeness said thank you and we walked away laughing.

Everyone got together and we headed to a bar/pub just a few minutes away from the stadium for more drinks. We stayed at this place for an unknown amount of time and then when it was getting quite late we headed for a club. A club in Detroit. This will be an experience I thought. In fact I didn’t think that as I was quite drunk and didn’t really have any forethought on the situation at all. I just went with the flow.

The big group (which was around 15-20 or so) shrunk to around maybe 10 for the club. Some of these details might be wrong because as you can see, lots of alcohol was consumed. It somehow came to be that my cousin and I were at the front of the group as we were walking up to the entrance of the club. There was a big wall of black bouncers who took one look at this skinny white guy and that small white girl and they shook their heads. This shaking of the heads seemingly meant – you’re not coming in. No ID fail, no clothing requirement unsatisfied, no being too drunk – just no. I must have missed the No Honkies sign.

Luckily with this night being slightly organised we were in luck. Tara whose birthday it was had arranged for our entrance and we were let in a separate entrance by someone who worked within the club.

With the racist blockade behind us we walked in to the club and were led straight up some stairs and then some more stairs to a small bar on the top level of the club. I wasn’t sure if it was VIP treatment or for our safety. Our group were the only white people in the club which had hundreds of people in; and the locals didn’t seem too happy at our presence. I thought it was all hilarious. Our group had a great time at the bar; shots flowed, we were getting pretty drunk now. Pretty drunk usually means that I feel the need to dance. I informed people that it was dancing time and headed off down the stairs, luckily with people following.

The dance floor was pretty big but no one was actually on it; everyone was stood around the edge just looking menacingly at each other. The amount of alcohol in me helped me in not hesitating to work my way through the crowd and onto the dance floor first. I turned around and was joined by my cousin and some of the group. After around 5 minutes the dance floor was half full – who knew that a bunch of nearly-barred whities would have got the party going?

I don’t really recall how much longer we spent in the club but it was a fair while. Afterwards a few of us ended up in some all-night restaurant for some very drunken burgers and chips. There are some funny photos to accompany the drunkenness here so I shan’t go into much detail as they speak for themselves. Needless to say, we had been drinking for more than 12 hours = tomorrow is going to be a bad day!

Posted by Explorer_T 22:07 Archived in USA Tagged baseball club usa tigers drunk detroit

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