The old saying goes, what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas. Well much like our cultural norms, I defied that.
How We Met
Ashante, Justice, Kaya (twin) and I were due for another trip and turn up. This time it was a $45 trip to Las Vegas, Nevada. They planned to stay for an entire week, but I had a full-time career to return to and could only stay for the weekend. I needed to make the most of my time spent.
I knew that every time we cliqued up, shit got wild and hectic, so I decided to create an agenda. Outside of food, I signed us up with Hornak for many VIP club experiences.
We missed all of them.
For those of you that know me and my issues with timeliness, well the clique is me x4. I still needed to make the most of my time, so I lied about the check-in time for the last club adventure.
We made it on time for Drai’s nightclub.
In line, drunk AF, we rehearsed our names for the night and decided on a designated phony number to give out. It took us three rounds to settle on fictitious names and recite them. Mine was Essence, of course.
Inside the nightclub we did a walk through.
It seemed pretty chill, almost too chill. The club’s vibe was below my expectations. Regardless of what was happening around us, I sought more. It was my first time in Vegas and I thought it was going to be big lit 25/8. Confused, I treated Drai’s like any other club and walked to the front somewhere near the dance floor.
“Why can’t we be on the dancefloor, what kind of nonsense?” I asked aloud.
“Nelly is set to perform soon.” A club worker responded.
I didn’t see him at first, but gahdamn he scared me.
“Oh word? Nelly who? Furtado? If she’s performing we’ve got to go. This is not the vibe I was looking for.”
“No. No. HA! No. Nelly. Nelly like, if ya wanna take a ride with me Nelly.” he said doing a lil jig. I moved with him.
Then I turned to my friends.
“NELLY IS PERFORMING!! We need to find a spot to see ‘em.” Justice was the only person who matched my enthusiasm for this artist.
The lights went down, and we backed up following Ashante.
A man dragged her by the waist into VIP and we followed suit.
The beat dropped.
Men in the section reached for each of our waists. I felt a hand on mine and looked back.
“Are you single?” I asked pointing to the other women in the section.
“Yes.” he replied. So I got back into my vibe and danced on him.
My twin and A’Tae danced on some randos too. Sipping on whatever, we had a good time.
At the beginning of the next song, a girl approached me and whispered, “It’s my best friend’s birthday, this is her section and you’re dancing with her boyfriend.”
I donkey kicked his ass. I let the clique know what’s up and we climbed the seat to exit her section. The girlfriend gave me a head nod and we wished her a happy birthday.
A’tae, twin, and Justice laughed. “We could’ve turned up with them instead. Should’ve kicked them niggas out.”
“Right, like I wish my nigga would be dancing in MY section with another bitch.”
“Niggas ain’t shit.”
“Oh well, free drinks.” Still lit we walked and danced our way through another walk through. I led them to the top of Drai’s because I wanted to see Nelly.
Then that rolling beat came in and I couldn’t control my inner ratchet self… I was mobbin’ through the beach, yeah the city by the sea Mama tried to keep me home, but I love the fuckin’ streets
They stood near me and hyped me up, although they hated the song. (Real Friends)
Mid jig, I was stopped by a bouncer.
“Excuse me ladies, can y’all come this way?” The bouncer pointed to some man sitting behind a velvet rope.
“My mama said don’t talk to strangers sir.” He introduced himself to me as he escorted us toward the rope.
There were three people in this section. The man that invited us, another man and a woman. I turned to A’Tae,
“What do they want with us?”
“I’m not going.” She said.
“It’s Vegas,” I responded, “C’mon! There’s more liquor”
I heard Nelly’s voice on the mic and couldn’t see, so my happy ass walked right into the VIP with the clique in toe. We introduced ourselves and the man poured up. He spoke with A’Tae while Justice and I drank, twerked and turned up to Nelly’s performance.
At some point the man told us it was his birthday. Te’kaila was out at that time and if you don’t know what that means, you won’t ever know. I recorded the turn up from his phone.
Nelly’s performance ended, the bottles were empty and the three of them were making moves to leave. We thanked them and bid the others well wishes on their engagement and trip. One foot out of the velvet rope and my twin disappeared.
Regular music was being played and I figured she was on her way to the dance floor. Instead, I looked up and she was flying above me. Some rando lifted her up into his section. Other members in their group helped each of us up too. Shots were in our hands before names were exchanged.
Names were never exchanged. We didn’t even need to rehearse honestly.
I took another shot.
I looked around.
“I’m talking to you!” Some rando was down below yelling up at me at the top of his lungs.
“Haaahn?” I asked. Too drunk to function. My hearing is the first to go when I am under the influence. If you’re not the bass of a song, might as well beat it.
“Come down here.” I imagined him say.
“I CAN’T HEAR,” I yelled as I sat down on the ledge, “I’M LEGALLY DEAF WHEN I’M DRUNK. P.O.P. HOL IT DOWN!”
“I’m not playing with you.” I imagined him say as he lifted me down to the floor. I locked eyes with the bouncer. He gave me a nod. I hoped he was looking out for me.
This guy and I had a conversation. Then he lifted me back up into the section and stepped back for a muscle flex.
The clique and I danced, drank and left their section for the dance floor shortly thereafter. Hoursssssss went by.
At 4:00am the club cleared out and we walked two blocks to a designated pick up area for our Lyft. The wind was so strong I thought I heard someone calling out, “Essence.”
“Someone is calling you, Essence.” Justice said. We all turned around and it was him.
The man ran across the street. “I’ve been calling your name for a block.” I imagined him say.
“I can’t really hear when I’m drunk.”
A conversation at that moment would’ve been useless. So we exchanged numbers instead.
Back at the resort I goofed around with the baes until we were too tired to look at each other any longer. At the crack of dawn I woke up to messages from the man…