Okay; Amsterdam... April 31st, 1998...
Anton the Clown
Anyway, we inched our way through the crowd, stopping for beers every 50 yards or so... I won't get into the details of the entire day and night because I could write a book about it, but by 5 in the morning we were all too pissed up to go on... As we all know, Anton did not handle alcohol too well, and he (like the rest of us) was in pretty bad shape. We stumbled back to Central Station, tripping over passed out drunks and narrowly avoiding a projectile vomit now and again. It took forever, but eventually we did find that train back to The Hague. Everyone on that train was in such a state, and very few people managed to stay awake. I don't know how, but I awoke with a shock at our stop and struggled to wake everyone up (easy to say but hard to do). A few woke up slowly, other I had to shake and kick. Anton woke up, mumbled something incomprehensible, gave me the finger, and passed out again. This happened a few more times: I'd wake him up, he'd say something like 'okay, okay, okay, piss off. I'm fine... I'll be there in a sec.' I'm trying to tell him that this train is about to leave again but he's dozing off again. The train-whistle blows signalling its departure, so I tell my mates (the ones that are 'sort of' awake) that I'll warn the train conductor to buy us some time, and they should just carry the ones that are still passed out off the train. Moments later (I'm still searching for the guy with the whistle) I see my buddies stumble out of the train. I run back and find that Anton is missing... All of this is happening within a minute or so, and just as Anton wants to depart the train... the doors shut. Right in his drunken face... You should have seen his expression as he realised what was happening...
This was Anton's first night in Holland. He had dropped all his bags & belongings of at my brothers house. His money was spent, he didn't have a clue where he was going, and -worst of all- he didn't have our address and/or telephone number on him. And he was drunk...very, very drunk. My buddies hopped in various taxi and I stood there at the station wondering what would become of Anton. I found a guy from the railway police and asked where that train was heading for (Belgium!) and explained the story. The guy had a heart, and called it in to his colleagues at the next train stop. I later heard that the police boarded the train, spotted a very drunk oriental-looking guy with peroxide blond hair and an American accent, pulled him off the train, and escorted him back to The Hague.
Anton had a big hang over that day, as did all of us. Fortunately, he stayed for two and a half weeks (instead of just a few days) and we made a few more memories (and hangovers) that holiday.