Thanks to the tourist bus from Iran, we made it back to Baku in time for a feast with Yahya and his family. That evening, we relayed the following story from our days in Tbilisi, Georgia:
As we shared an early evening beer on Tabori mountain in Tbilisi with our pal (who shall remain nameless for security reasons), he thrust his bottle in the direction of the skyline, and proudly toasted “to vulva!”
“Why is he toasting his favorite part of the female anatomy?” we wondered.
Alas, no. Our friend explained that when you drink beer in Georgia, the tradition is to toast someone or something you don’t like, so as to wish that person or thing bad fortune. Still confused?
Turns out that our friend’s toast was in fact to Vova, the short for Vladimir….as in Vladimir Putin, the Russian premier.
Note: Never toast a friend when drinking beer in Georgia. Wine and liquor toasts (based on our unfortunate extensive experience) are standard and often very lengthy, sometimes teary affairs.